Remember that lightweight "super fight" between Gilbert Melendez and Eddie Alvarez that was supposed to go down under the Strikeforce banner a few years ago that never came to fruition?
Well, that wasn't the only time a much-anticipated showdown between "El Nino" and "Silent Assassin" was dashed. According to Alvarez, Melendez had the chance to prove he's the better fighter in had he joined the DREAM Lightweight Grand Prix back in 2008.
And with the recent decision of Melendez to stick with UFC after initally coming to terms with Bellator, confirmed the third and final strike for a fight that will now more than likely never happen unless Alvarez one day makes his way into the Octagon.
In fact, Alvarez feels Melendez will always find a reason to duck him now and forever.
His words (via MMA Fighting):
"He didn't want come here. Gilbert doesn't want to come anywhere where I'm at. Gilbert don't ever want to sign with a company where I am. Wherever Gilbert goes, he wants to be the top dog, which is the same reason he's avoided me and will for years to come. Gilbert had the opportunity in the Dream tournament, he didn't. He had the opportunity to sign with Bellator, and go into a Bellator tournament, he didn't. And now he had the opportunity to come to Bellator where I am. He doesn't want to come where I am. He's a phony. It's a facade, it's a mask, he says he wants to fight me, he doesn't want to fight me. He says he wants to fight me when I make headlines. That's the only time, so he can get some attention. Other than that, Gilbert Melendez does not want to fight me. He knows its a bad fight for him, a bad night for him, that's the real truth with that."
Of course, "El Nino" would likely argue that his new contract with UFC -- which includes a coaching spot on The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 20 and subsequent title shot against Anthony Pettis -- was much more intriguing than facing the Bellator champ.
Nonetheless, Alvarez is adamant Melendez never really wanted to go toe-to-toe with him, and his decision to remain a UFC fighter is proof positive.
Even if, contractually, it was impossible.