Melvin Guillard (Esther Lin/MMA Fighting)Can World Series of Fighting Rejuvenate the Career of Melvin Guillard? RJ Gardner May 2, 2014 Spotlight Melvin Guillard has always been an interesting fighter and one of the most athletically gifted athletes in the sport. His explosive athleticism is unmatched in the lightweight division, but he has never been able to truly capitalize on his gifts. He has never been able to really rise to the occasion. Recently, Guillard was released from the UFC following a dismal stretch in which he went 2-5 with one no-contest over his last eight outings for the promotion. Prior to the downturn, Guillard looked like a man on a mission when he racked up five consecutive wins between February 2010 and July 2011. He’s always been a difficult fighter to get a read on. In one fight, he will come out and look like an absolute world-beater. In his next outing, he will look like a gatekeeper. It’s been a roll of the dice as to which Guillard will show up come fight night. Now Guillard looks to start a new chapter in his professional fighting career. The long time UFC veteran and former competitor on season two of The Ultimate Fighter has signed a multi-fight deal with Ray Sefo’s World Series of Fighting. Can the WSOF do for Guillard what it has done for Josh Burkman, Yushin Okami and Rousimar Palhares? While that remains to be seen, it’s not unreasonable to speculate that the WSOF was the perfect landing spot for Guillard, who is still only 31 years old. Guillard is instantly the king of the WSOF lightweight division with a lot of interesting match-ups available for the WSOF team to put together. Considering that he is coming off a loss and a no-contest, Guillard is hardly in position to warrant an immediate title shot. However, a fight against someone like Brian Cobb, Dan Lauzon or even Jacob Volkmann would make a lot of sense. It wouldn’t even be out of the question to see Guillard, due to his star power, fight either Nick Newell or Gesias “JZ” Cavalcante to decide who gets to face WSOF lightweight champion Justin Gaethje. If Guillard is able to get some impressive wins under his belt and capture the WSOF lightweight title in the process, it would do wonders for his career and his confidence. When Guillard is on, he can hang with anyone in the world. The biggest issue Guillard has faced throughout his career is stability. In the last five years, he has trained at four different gyms. He has bounced from Jackson’s MMA to the Blackzilians to the Grudge Training Center to American Top Team, where he currently hangs his hat. Although changing camps can be a good experience for fighters, that many changes of scenery can be a detriment to growth and performance, something that can clearly be seen in Guillard’s record since 2011 when he left Greg Jackson’s camp. Guillard is already a hot-and-cold fighter, and jumping camps does nothing to create normalcy and routine to his training regimen. It would benefit him to find a permanent home at ATT. There are plenty of reasons to doubt a career rejuvenation from Guillard, but it’s impossible to deny the vast amounts of untapped potential still oozing out of him. Under the tutelage of Ricardo Liborio and Conan Silveira, he will get the leadership and direction he needs to get his career back on track. Add elite training partners like Daniel Straus, Jorge Masvidal, Tyron Woodley and Jason High to the mix, and Guillard will be pushed to the limit on a daily basis and greatly influenced by their professionalism and dedication. If Guillard is able to find a camp that will allow him to regain focus and get back into a rhythm, it will be no time at all before he is back in the UFC Octagon battling for position in the deepest division in all of MMA.