Eddie Alvarez and Gilbert Melendez have one unfortunate thing in common, public contract disputes with their promoters.
First, Alvarez went up against Bellator as he fielded options from the UFC until eventually resigning with them and going on to reclaim his lightweight belt against Michael Chandler at Bellator 106.
Melendez had the more recent of the two as he just recently agreed to an offer with Bellator after his contract with the UFC expired. Having matching rights for recently made free agents, the UFC at least matched the offer and offered Melendez a title shot after a coaching gig on the 20th season of The Ultimate Fighter.
Since Melendez’s official return to the UFC, potential match-ups against Chandler and Alvarez have remained a fantasy. For Alvarez though, he told MMAFighting that he knew Melendez wasn’t up for the move to a mutual promotion: “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,” Alvarez said. “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.”
Alvarez had also made his feelings known during an interview, “He didn’t want to come here,” Alvarez said. “Gilbert doesn’t want to come anywhere where I’m at. Gilbert don’t ever want to sign with a company where I’m at.”
Alvarez will take on Chandler again in a rubber match which headlines Bellator’s first ever PPV, Bellator 120, on May 17th.
For complete coverage of Bellator season 10, visit SciFighting.com