Round 1. Ishida shoots early but Melendez easily sprawls. Ishida lands a straight left and throws a high kick that’s blocked. Ishida shoots and Melendez defends easily. This crowd is quick to boo. Melendez moves in with some loopy punches that are defended by Ishida. Melendez looks very confident. Melendez catches Ishida with a punch moving in. Ishida grabs a single leg. Melendez defends very well but Ishida eventually gets him down in the corner of the cage and grabs his back. Melendez reverses out and takes Ishida down to big cheers. Ishida tries to lock up a guillotine but doesn’t come close. Melendez isn’t able to do anything with top position as the round comes to a close. 10-9 Melendez.
Round 2. Melendez moves in looking to establish the jab. Ishida shoots. Melendez blocks and moves him against the cage. Melendez lands some punches and Ishida is bleeding from the ear. He hits some quality punches on Ishida near the cage and Ishida makes a desperation shot. Melendez blocks and takes down Ishida, but Ishida stands back up. Melendez throws a nice series of knees to the body. Melendez with some nice hooks that again look to have Ishida in trouble, but Ishida fires back. Ishida throws a high kick that’s blocked and Melendez fires down a punch as the round comes to a close. Melendez looks tremendous here. 10-9 Melendez, 20-18 Melendez.
Round 3. The crowd chants for Gilbert as the round begins. Melendez throws a series of left/right combinations but isn't able to do damage. However, he does land a hook that drops Ishida and he moves with a flurry on the ground trying to end the fight. Ishida is fine and Melendez slows down the attack. Melendez mounts and fires a series of punches until Herb Dean steps in and stops the fight. The crowd explodes. Great performance by Melendez, who is a tremendous fighter and doesn't perhaps get the credit he deserves for that.
Winner: Gilbert Melendez, Round 3, TKO.