Strikeforce lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez is headed for the UFC – as most expected.

Cesar Gracie, the trainer for Melendez, confirmed with that “El Nino” is in the beginning stages of contracts with the UFC.

However, as many predicted, Melendez could enter the promotion in the featherweight division should his teammate, Nate Diaz, successfully claim the UFC lightweight title from Benson Henderson this Saturday night at UFC on Fox 5.

Melendez has not competed since a win early this year over Josh Thomson. He was scheduled – twice – to face Pat Healy, but a shoulder injury suffered in training cancelled the fights.

Diaz also discussed the arrival of Melendez and how it could affect him, saying he would move to welterweight if unable to win the belt from Henderson and that “Gilbert Melendez is going to be the champion for sure.”