Despite signing with Bare Knuckle FC, Chad Mendes hasn’t ruled out a return to the octagon.

The former three-time UFC featherweight title challenger signed a multifight deal with BKFC and is expected to make his promotional debut at 155 pounds on Oct. 22 in Chandler, Ariz. But Mendes (18-5) revealed that he’s still under a contract with the UFC and may consider lacing up the gloves again after his stint with BKFC.

“I’m still under UFC contract,” Mendes said on a recent episode of “The Joe Rogan Experience.” “I still have fights on my UFC contract, so there is still a possibility that I come back and maybe I want to do one or two more UFC fights after this. We’ll see.”

Mendes has recently posted training videos of himself cracking pads, which sparked speculation of a potential comeback. The announcement that he signed with BKFC might’ve come as a surprise to many, but Mendes said he was approached about it a while back.

Though he was content with his decision when he retired in 2018, Mendes eventually started getting the itch to compete and didn’t want to regret not following his heart.

“This is something that’s kind of been in the works for probably a year now,” Mendes said. “I just turned 36 in May, and we were just talking about having that desire. When I left the UFC, I was just about to have my first baby. I had a lot on my plate. I had just lost, but even going into that fight, I had started a company. I was working on a few other companies, and there was a lot that I was more excited about than competing at the time.

“For me, I was like I’m gonna take some time off or just end it here. I have other things going on, and we’ll see what happens in the future. So I decided to retire, talked it over with the wife, and that was what the game plan was. Fast forward two-and-a-half years later, obviously I still have that desire and my baby girl is bigger. We are pregnant with a second, and I just started thinking, I’m getting older. I don’t want to get into my 40’s and then basically still have this desire to compete and be like it’s too late.”

Having thrilled fans with plenty of finishes and stand-up wars, Mendes owns eight knockouts, taking out the likes of Darren Elkins, Ricardo Lamas and Myles Jury all in the first round.

So the idea of throwing hands bare knuckle is intriguing to Mendes, who hopes to take BKFC by storm.

“I’ve always wanted to box,” Mendes said. “Coming off of wrestling, my style in the UFC was even boxing and wrestling, were probably my two favorite things to do. I absolutely loved boxing sparring when I would be training through training camps and then obviously wrestling, too, but I always wanted to try and compete in some boxing competition. And so Bare Knuckle actually reached out to (Uriah) Faber and was like, ‘Hey, do you think Mendes would ever be interested in this?’ I probably never thought of anything bare knuckle before, but boxing would definitely be fun.”