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Josh Thomson wants to resolve ‘unsettled business’ with Gilbert Melendez in Bellator

Josh Thomson wants a fourth fight with Gilbert Melendez, this time inside the Bellator cage.

Lightweight contenders Josh Thomson and Gilbert Melendez already faced each other thrice inside a mixed martial arts cage. All three fights happened in the now defunct Strikeforce promotion, with “El Niño” winning two of those contests via decision.

The 41-year-old Thomson is currently signed with Bellator, and hasn’t fought since 2017 when he lost to Patricky “Pitbull” via second round knockout. If he does return to action, he wants a fourth fight against Melendez inside the Bellator cage.

“This would not be like a money fight. This would be more of a situation where the two of us feel like there’s unsettled business,” Thomson said in his YouTube channel (transcript by MMA Junkie). “I won the first fight hands down, convincing. He won the second fight, hands down, convincingly.

“The third fight was a split decision loss. It was very controversial. As he was leaving the cage, people were booing. People were throwing things.

“As we walked down the tunnel (backstage) – I felt this was extremely inappropriate – people started spitting at them as they were leaving the arena. If you go back and watch that fight, I obviously felt like I won; he obviously felt like he won.”

Thomson sees a possible fight as an opportunity that would benefit both him and Melendez in some way.

“We spent 75 minutes in the cage. Every time it was for the title,” Thomson said. “This time it’s not for the title. This time is a three-round fight. Bellator doesn’t do five-round main event fights. This is a good opportunity for the two of us.

“We know that we’re not what we used to be. There’s no doubt about that. There’s no denying that. But we both feel like there’s unsettled business.”

Melendez went on a five-fight losing streak in the UFC spanning from 2014. He was released from the roster last week after a six-year run, compiling a 1-6 record with the company.

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