Fighting out of Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia, top lightweight contender T.J. Grant appeared in the title picture once he walked through Matt Wiman at UFC on FOX 6 and earned a quick stoppage win over the former two-time title challenger Gray Maynard at UFC 160. However, Anthony Pettis just pulled out of his UFC 163 headliner with the head honcho of the featherweight division, Jose Aldo. “Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung has taken his place, and now “Showtime” claims he’s ready to take Grant’s spot as number one contender at 155lbs.
“As of right now, I haven’t been told anything,” Grant said on Fuel TV. “I’m prepared for Benson Henderson, I try not to focus on all that other stuff. My sights are set on Benson Henderson and I feel like I earned my shot and it’s my time.”
Once Pettis pulled from his showdown with Aldo at UFC 153, Showtime suggested that he wants a shot at the lightweight title, instead of Grant taking on Benson for the 155-pound strap. Pettis, the last man to beat Henderson at the final WEC show, where he landed an incredible off the cage kick in the last round, wants a rematch for the belt in his hometown of Milwaukee, but Ben Henderson and T.J Grant are already booked to do battle (UFC164) on August 31, 2013.
Grant (21-5, 8-3 UFC) is currently on a five-fight win streak at lightweight, and started his UFC career at welterweight before three tough decision losses inspired the cut to 155 pounds.
Almost complete opposites with their approach, Grant goes out there to make it a gritty battle wherever the fight takes place. He’s always going in for the kill, whereas Henderson is comfortable with leaving it in the judges’ hands.
Henderson (19-2, 7-0 UFC) has been undefeated since the WEC and UFC emerged, but “Smooth” hasn’t been the most dominant champion the lightweight division has seen thus far; apart from his dismantling of Nate Diaz, he hasn’t really shown to be leaps and bounds ahead of his opponents. Each one of his fights in the Octagon have ended by decision, a few of them being very controversial.
Will Pettis bump ahead of Grant, even though the bout has already set to go down this Summer? Showtime fights out of Milwaukee Wisc., which gives them all the more reason to do a little matchmaking edit and put Grant back in line.