TJ Grant & Nate Diaz Removed From Official UFC Lightweight Rankings

This time last year things were going so well for UFC lightweight T.J. Grant.

The Canadian was coming off four straight wins at 155 pounds and heading into the biggest fight of his career, a title eliminator with Gray Maynard, which he would go on to win in devastating fashion. Grant’s first round KO over Maynard made him one of the most feared men in the division and put him on a collision course with then-champion Benson Henderson.

Fast forward to today, the 30-year old hasn’t fought in almost a year and has been removed from the official UFC rankings.

The reason for Grant’s downfall is all due to him suffering a concussion while training in jiu-jitsu prior to his scheduled title fight against Henderson at UFC 164. The accident forced him out of the fight and Anthony Pettis stepped in as his replacement.

READ MORE:  Arnold Allen mocks English Football team "They shouldn’t have been in the final anyway."

“Showtime” went on to defeat Henderson for the second time and the rest is history. A bout against Pettis was targeted for UFC on Fox 9 but Grant could not get medically cleared and he was forced to turn down the fight.

Twelve months have now passed since the Halifax native suffered his accident and his problems haven’t yet gone away. Pettis is set to fight Gilbert Melendez at the end of the year and Grant’s time as the No.1 contender has seems to have come to an end.

Yesterday the UFC made this clear by removing Grant from the official UFC rankings. He was previously ranked at No.4 but the standout fighter has now been removed, with everyone behind him moving up a space.

READ MORE:  Conor McGregor confirms he will fight Michael Chandler in UFC return at 'The end of the year'

This isn’t anything new from the UFC, they have removed plenty of fighters due to inactivity in the past. But it is a huge blow for Grant who was so close to making it all the way to the top. He hopes to return in October but after the year he’s had, he will just be happy to get back inside the Octagon.

Also removed from the list was Nate Diaz. Although having fought and won as recently as this past November – a round one TKO of Gray Maynard at The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 18 Finale – Diaz has been unwilling to return to the ring under his current pay structure. As such, it looks as if the UFC is sending Diaz a clear message; fight or retire.

READ MORE:  Khamzat Chimaev shares details on 'Violent’ illness after UFC Saudi Arabia exit: 'I had severe headaches'

With the mix around, the official ufc lightweight rankings are now as followed:

1. Gilbert Melendez

2. Benson Henderson

3. Josh Thomson

4. Khabib Nurmagomedov

5. Donald Cerrone

6. Rafael dos Anjos

7. Jim Miller

8. Gray Maynard

9. Myles Jury

10. Michael Johnson

11. Edson Barboza

12. Bobby Green

13. Rustam Khabilov

14. Jorge Masvidal *NR

15. Joe Lauzon *NR