Gilbert Melendez is ready to lock horns with Pat HealyPosted on September 18, 2012, 10:21 PM by Mike Searson
Strikeforce Lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez (21-2 MMA, 11-1 SF) hopes to defend his title for a fifth time when he takes on Pat Healy (28-16 MMA, 6-1 SF) at Strikeforce: Melendez vs. Healy, on September 29 at the Power Balance Pavillion in Sacramento, California. The event will air live on Showtime.
Healy is one of the bigger lightweights in the division and is coming in off of a five-fight win streak. He walks around at 185 to 190 pounds but always cuts at least 30 of those to make the 155-pound threshold. Melendez claims that it is nothing to worry about, especially that Jake Shields is one of his training partners for this fight.
Melendez said earlier today: "If anyone can replicate Pat, it's Jake. I lock horns with a lot of guys, and the first thing I do is say, 'They've got nothing on Jake.' No one's stronger than Jake Shields. No one has a body-lock like Jake Shields, no one has a top game, and no one's as big of a grinder. Especially when he's on top of me. It gets a little heavy, almost like a straitjacket. But I've figured my way out of that straight-jacket, and I'll do it against anybody."
Healy is expected to use his size advantage to slow Melendez down over the course of five rounds. Melendez might have the incentive to stick and move given his smaller size, but he said he will not run from his bigger opponent: "I'm not a runner. I'm not going to be running from Pat Healy the whole fight. I think that can just become a nightmare. I'm here to fight, and hopefully my speed does play a role. But we're going to be locking horns."