What’s next for Melvin Guillard?

With Melvin Guillard’s impressive knockout victory over Shane Roller at UFC 132, it’s safe to say the “Young Assassin” is finally living up to his potential as an MMA fighter.

Guillard started his UFC career on the second season of the “Ultimate Fighter” reality series, losing to Joe Stevenson in his first match.

Earlier on in his MMA career, some questioned Melvin’s discipline and dedication to the sport, writing him off as more bark than bite. Melvin lost three of his first six MMA fights in the UFC, all by submission.

After struggling earlier on in his UFC career, Melvin turned things around, winning eight of his next nine MMA fights. Now, Melvin is finally poised for a number one contender matchup.

“I am the best 155-pounder,” Guillard said in an interview with MMAjunkie.com. “I’m a finisher. No disrespect to Frankie Edgar or Gray Maynard, but they proved it in the last fight when they fought each other. Gray had him on his heels and didn’t finish. I’m a finisher. I go in for the kill. I smell blood. I’m going to just keep knocking guys out until I get a title shot.”

Over the years, Guillard’s biggest weakness inside the Octagon has been his Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, with seven of his eight total losses coming via submission. Guillard is one of the most dangerous strikers in the UFC’s lightweight division, and his wrestling ability is often underestimated.

Guillard’s submission defense hasn’t really been tested since he lost to Nick Diaz at “UFC Fight Night 19,” and it’s hard to tell where his BJJ is. If Guillard’s submission defense is as improved as his striking and takedown defense has been recently, he’ll be a tough matchup for anyone in the lightweight division.

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