Canadian TJ Grant had earned himself a shot at the UFC Lightweight Champion, Benson Henderson, with five impressive victories inside the Octagon, the latest a UFC 160 stoppage by Gray Maynard in the first round. Unfortunately for Grant, a concussion suffered in training has put a damper on his title shot. The native of Cole Harbour, NS has been forced to pull out of the fight and now Anthony Pettis will step into the slot and rematch Henderson, this time with UFC gold on the line.
“I was doing jiu-jitsu in a gi, and I was on top, trying to pass the guard. My partner kind of went inverted and went to roll over. When he came back, his heel hit me in the head. It was just a good, clean shot in the head. I was kind of impressed that it didn’t f—ing knock me out. It was a really hard hit, and there were actually two impacts on the same roll. I don’t know which one did it. We just kept rolling after the first shot. From that point, later on in the roll he went for a sweep, and like I always would, I used my head to post out and stop it. That was right at the end of the roll, and after that I knew that I rattled my brain a little bit. I never really had a concussion that I can remember. I’ve never felt anything close to it, but it is what it is. I fought Gray a couple weeks before, and he hit me a couple of times, too. So who knows?”
Some have questioned whether UFC President Dana White may have persuaded Grant to drop out of the bout but that is something that Grant has adamantly denied:
“Conspiracy theorists are idiots and douchebags. I don’t even know why I addressed it, to tell you the truth. You see people writing these things, and for people to think that I would do that for what? A couple dollars? The potential money that comes in from winning a world title, that was my 100 percent focus. That’s why had it been any other fight, everyone would have known about this a couple of weeks ago. But you obviously want to hold off for a title fight.”