When Strikeforce has its final event in January, it will have to do it without one of their champions.
Gilbert Melendez, the current and possibly last Strikeforce Lightweight champion, has pulled out of his match against Pat Healy on Jan. 12.
In a report by Tatame, Melendez’s trainer Cesar Gracie confirmed the fight’s cancellation:
“I think he never recovered from the shoulder injury and will not be able to fight in January. He had a doctor’s appointment this week and the doctor said that he will not be able to fight.”
This is the second time the Melendez-Healy fight has been scrapped. The two were scheduled to face off in September until Melendez injured himself during training. This led to Showtime cancelling the September event.
With Melendez out of his last Strikeforce fight, it looks like he can fully concentrate on coming to the UFC.
Although fans will no doubt rejoice that Melendez is taking the next step in his career, Healy should at least be compensated in some way for Melendez’s absence. Perhaps Strikeforce could put Healy in a replacement fight with Jorge Masvidal or K.J. Noons.
Maybe Zuffa tries for Melendez vs. Healy for a third time, only this time the fight will take place inside of the octagon.
Despite the absence of the lightweight title match, the Jan. 12 fight card will still feature two title matches: Nate Marquardt vs. Tarec Saffiedine for the Strikeforce Welterweight title and Luke Rockhold vs. Lorenz Larkin for the middleweight title.
What do you think about Melendez-Healy fight being cancelled? Answer with a comment or get on Twitter and sent a tweet to @alstover with the hashtag #RantMMA.