Diego Sanchez vs. Gilbert Melendez official for UFC 166

USA TODAY Sports

A previously reported lightweight contest between Diego Sanchez and Gilbert Melendez is now official for UFC 166 in Houston this October.

UFC 166 was made official by the UFC in yesterday's official press release. The October 19th PPV event will see Cain Velasquez defend his HW title against Junior dos Santos in their 3rd encounter in as many years, Hector Lombard battles Nate Marquardt at welterweight, and now Gilbert Melendez/Diego Sanchez is confirmed for the evening's lineup. This lightweight bout was reported for an event in the fall, but now we know when and where they'll be squaring off.

Sanchez (24-5) was a former lightweight contender who earned his title shot with consecutive FOTN victories over Joe Stevenson and Clay Guida. A total thrashing by B.J. Penn sent Diego back to welterweight, where he went 2-2 and was highly fortunate to win against Martin Kampmann. Sanchez fought Takanori Gomi at UFC on Fuel 8 this March, winning a controversial split decision in addition to failing to make the 155 lbs limit.

Melendez (21-3) is the former Strikeforce lightweight champion who was given an immediate title shot against Ben Henderson at UFC on Fox 7 in San Jose. In a closely contested bout, Gilbert dropped a split decision to the UFC champion. It was his first defeat since a decision loss to Josh Thomson in 2008.

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