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Mendes wants Edgar rematch: ‘I know I can beat’ him

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UFC featherweight contender Chad Mendes is looking to get a rematch with former champion Frankie Edgar once he’s eligible to return to action next month.

Just over a month away from being eligible to return to the UFC, Chad Mendes is booked to face Myles Jury at UFC Fight Night 133. But he has a certain rematch in mind for a future bout.

The former featherweight title challenger would like to get a second crack at former UFC champ and fellow longtime contender Frankie Edgar, whom he lost to via first-round knockout in December 2015.

Half a year after the Edgar defeat, he was suspended two years by USADA, the UFC’s anti-doping partner, due to a positive test. Mendes claimed he used a cream to treat his psoriasis, and unbeknownst to him, the product contained a banned substance.

Mendes has not competed in MMA since losing to Edgar more than two years ago.

“I honestly would like to get that Frankie fight back,” Mendes told Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour (transcript via MMAFighting.com). “Frankie is obviously a top-level guy and he’s a guy that I know I can beat. That fight would be great. I honestly feel like any of the guys I match up with in the top ten, I match up great.”

Now wouldn’t be the worst time to run back Edgar vs. Mendes, it seems. Featherweight champ Max Holloway is set to defend his title against Brian Ortega, who stopped Edgar at UFC 222 in March, this summer. Edgar recently beat Cub Swanson in a rematch but is now left without a dance partner.

Booking Mendes isn’t the easiest task, considering he trains at Sacramento’s Team Alpha Male, which has two fighters in the UFC 145-pound rankings — Josh Emmett, No. 6, and Darren Elkins, No. 10. Mendes said they have agreed not to fight each other unless a championship is up for grabs.

“It sucks now that Team Alpha Male is kind of taking over the featherweight division,” Mendes said. “I think we have four or five guys in top 15. We’ve already sat and talked. I told these guys, I love you all and I don’t want to fight you unless it’s for a title, but if it’s for a belt, we’re gonna scrap. I think everyone is on the same page as far as that goes. We’re not going to fight unless it’s for a belt. That’s kind of where we’re at at this point.”

Mendes is officially eligible to return to action June 10. He faces Jury in Boise, Idaho on July 13.

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