Following Henderson vs. Melendez, Pettis Says He's Still the Best at 155

John Heinis@HeinisHardNewsSenior Analyst IApril 22, 2013

Upcoming UFC featherweight title challenger Anthony Pettis apparently wasn't all that impressed with lightweight champ Benson Henderson's split decision win over Gilbert Melendez on Saturday. 

Minutes after the high-paced affair ended, "Showtime" tweeted he still believes he's a cut above the rest at lightweight. 

Despite having his UFC debut spoiled by Clay Guida in June 2011, Pettis has rattled off three consecutive wins over Jeremy Stephens and perennial contenders Joe Lauzon and Donald Cerrone. 

The innovative striker is also the last fighter to defeat Henderson, becoming the last WEC lightweight title holder at WEC 53 in December 2010. 

After getting tired of waiting for the logjam in the UFC's 155-pound division to clear up, Pettis decided to drop down to featherweight to challenge divisional champion Jose Aldo in August.

Even though it was his second close split-decision win in three title fights, the victory over Melendez leaves Henderson tied with BJ Penn for the UFC record for consecutive lightweight title defenses. 

Since the loss to Pettis, "Bendo" has compiled a perfect 7-0 record inside the Octagon, though he has yet to finish a fight in that span. 

For Melendez, a two-time Strikeforce champ at 155 pounds, the loss to Henderson snaps a seven-fight win streak over names such as Josh Thomson and Shinya Aoki.

However, due to the competitive nature of the bout, he will remain near the top of just about any upcoming lightweight rankings at least until his next fight.

Will the fans ever be treated to a long-awaited rematch between Pettis and Henderson, or is Henderson vs. Melendez II, or even Henderson vs. Aldo, far more likely at this point? 


John Heinis is a featured columnist for Bleacher Report. He is also the MMA Editor for and contributes MMA videos to The Young Turks Sports Show.