Tonight I had planned to post a preview to what had the makings to be an incredible fight between Al Iaquinta and Gilbert Melendez. Unfortunately news broke late this afternoon that that exciting light weight bout wasn’t going to happen. Gilbert Melendez has tested positive for testosterone metabolites, present from an outside source. Melendez failed a urine test following his UFC 188 loss to Eddie Alvarez. The light weight has come clean admitting to his use of a banned substance, apologizing to fans and the UFC today. Melendez will be suspended for one year.
A tough break for Raging Al who’s been working harder then ever for what had the makings of being the biggest fight of his career. Iaquinta was originally set to fight Bobby Green. Once Green was forced out with an injury, it was Melendez stepping in on short notice to fight Iaquinta. A disappointed Iaquinta appeared on the MMA Hour earlier today.
“I don’t know what to do. I’m just disappointed. I can’t describe it, man.” Iaquinta went on to say “I was ready to go. It was a perfect fight for me stylistically. I brought in guys who really had a good style and I’ve been doing great with the sparring, so it’s just, I don’t know, I’m just frustrated right now, man. I’m real frustrated.”
Tough for any fighter to really put that feeling into words. Putting all the work in, laying it all on the line and having it all shut down because of a poor moral decision by your opponent. It’s simply frustrating and unfair.
Iaquinta has been removed from the card. The eight day’s would have been too short notice to find an opponent of Melendez’s caliber. Leaving us wondering what’s next for Iaquinta in the light weight division? Now with some time Al will look to clean up a lingering knee injury that has been bothering him post surgery after the Ultimate Fighter. Iaquinta told the MMA hour this afternoon that the knee troubles have been present throughout his four fight win streak. Iaquinta will visit doctors and look to get the loose cartilage behind his patella fixed. “To go into another fight not at 100-percent, I think I’m just going to get it looked at, get it set up with a good doctor and get it fixed. It’s a sign, I think.” Iaquinta said.
Not a set back by any means, just a postponement. Make no mistake about it Iaquinta has no intentions of going anywhere. He’s shown what he can do in the light weight division and will come back even tougher once his knee is cleaned up. For now sit tight Iaquinta Nation, Raging Al will be back in the octagon before you know it.