T.J. Grant Still Unable To Return From July Concussion


UFC lightweight contender T.J. Grant saw the opportunity of a lifetime slip away when a concussion suffered in training forced him out of his scheduled UFC 164 title bout against then-champion Benson Henderson.

As the story goes, Anthony Pettis, who was supposedly still healing from a knee injury that forced him out of his UFC 163 featherweight title bout against Jose Aldo, quickly stepped in to face Henderson in Pettis’ hometown of Milwaukee. The rest is history, as “Showtime” added a second victory over “Smooth” to his resume with a shocking first round armbar, locking up the UFC 155-pound title in the process.

Pettis is currently back on the shelf with another knee injury that required surgery, his timetable to return unknown as of right now.

Many people cried fowl at what had transpired, speculating that Grant was coerced to back out of the fight in order to book the more lucrative Henderson vs. Pettis rematch. But ESPN’s Brett Okamoto confirmed yesterday that Grant still has not been cleared to resume fighting after six months off:

It looks like the people who cried wolf at Grant’s initial absence will have to eat their words in a big way. Grant’s head injury from a session of Brazilian jiu-jitsu training is apparently much more serious than was initially put on.

Overall, it’s just an unfortunate circumstance for the Nova Scotian Grant. He was on top of the world after an impressive knockout of Gray Maynard at UFC 160 last May, a win that gave him five straight in the ultra-competitive UFC lightweight division.

There’s a litany of potentially great bouts that await Grant upon his return; it’s just a matter of when he can actually prepare for those.

Here’s to hoping Grant can get healed up and back in the Octagon soon; there’s no guarantee that the fast-moving division will wait for him to return to full health. Luckily for him, the title picture is extremely muddied at 155 pounds right now with Pettis on the shelf for the majority of 2014.

Josh Thomson will face off with Henderson in the main event of UFC on Fox 10 on January 25 in a perceived number one’s contender’s bout. But with it unclear when “Showtime” will next defend his championship, Grant may be campaigning for a bout with either of those fighters should he get cleared sometime this spring.

There’s no doubt that Grant is one of the top contenders at lightweight, so hopefully a seemingly innocuous injury won’t derail all of his momentum without him ever stepping into the cage.

Photo Credit: USA TODAY Sports

  • you better hope mma doesnt supersede hockey as the national pastime or canadians will dominate all weight classes lol

    • Thats a big step for MMA to pass hockey in Canada lol. It seems strange to me how different countries are obsessed with certain sports and others are baffled by why they are. Im from the US and I still wonder why Nascar is big here. To me its 300 laps in a circle of boredom. All in a hurry to race to nowhere and who knows who is in first or 6th place after 15 laps.
      Soccer in Brazil, Rugby, NFL(boring to me)
      MMA seems like the win all for all countries, but its coming on slow it seems. I thought it would dominate in 10 years and hasnt yet.
      I guess societies have become so passified over time, many still cant get past it.

      • On this note above. I was at relatives when the last Weidman fight happened and I bought the event and watched with my father who rarely sees any MMA. This is the 2nd event hes seen maybe, and at least now he's able to watch without being a bit uncomfortable because I constantly desribe their techniques and skills.
        He did say the next day, "I still keep seeing his ankle wrap around the other guy's leg" LMAO.