T.J. Grant was no doubt the number one contender to the UFC’s lightweight championship. He defeated former top contender Gray Maynard at UFC 160 and was declared the man to compete against Benson Henderson at UFC 164. Due to unfortunate circumstances, he will no longer compete for the championship and Anthony Pettis will fill that role for him. According to Grant, he says he wont necessarily compete for the championship when he comes back from injury.
He discussed the injury with Ariel Helwani:
“I want to do what’s best for me,” he said. “I want to fight for a long time. I want to live a long time. I want to enjoy my baby girl and all that stuff, so I thought about it a lot and talked to the UFC doctor and all the doctors here. The decision was 100 percent mine.”
To the conspiracy theorists, Grant would like them to know that he wouldn’t sell out for anything. And besides, he wasn’t even guaranteed a title shot by matchmaker Joe Silva upon withdrawing. Sure, Grant hopes to fight the winner of Henderson-Pettis, but the only thing Silva told him is that if he has to take a step back, it will only be one, minor step; in other words, another likely title eliminator.”
A bout with Josh Thomson makes the most sense if he’s not getting a title shot in the near future. Both are coming off impressive wins and are looking to compete for the championship as soon as possible.
What do you think? Should Grant earn a title shot or win one more before facing off against the winner of Henderson against Pettis?