TJ Grant still hasn’t fought since he quickly took out Gray Maynard at UFC 160 in May, 2013, and sounds like the lightweight contender won’t be returning to the Octagon any time soon.
As you likely recall, Grant suffered what turned out to be a serious concussion not long after he stopped Maynard, and the Canadian was forced to pass on two title shots.
The 30 year-old fighter has relayed in recent months that he continues to recover from the head injury, but unfortunately, Grant has yet to fight again. Case in point, UFC FN 54 was held in Grant’s hometown of Halifax, but the well rounded fighter wasn’t able to compete.
Well, Grant recently spoke with MMA Junkie.com, and discussed how his recovery is coming. Here is some of what the Fit Plus fighter had to say:
“I could fight tomorrow – I just know it wouldn’t be good for my long-term health,” Grant said. “Physically, I can do everything I need to, it’s just my brain. I want to make sure that’s OK, because it’s a lot more important than the other stuff. I know I can fight. I just want to be smart about it.”
“There’s no timetable,” Grant said. “I can work out at high intensity, I just don’t spar and stuff like that. We’ll see what happens. I’m just doing what I can and not getting too far away from the sport. Still somehow stay involved in it, watch it and keep my body in good shape. That’s really all I can do.”
Grant also acknowledged that he understands he won’t return to a title shot. The division’s landscape has changed since Grant fought last, and the likes of Khabib Nurmagomedov, Rafael dos Anjos and Donald Cerrone are within reach of a title shot (yes, especially Nurmagomedov, who called for a fight with Grant in the past).
The former welterweight was supposed to fight Benson Henderson last August, but was forced to withdraw due to the concussion. Then, the UFC offered Grant a scrap with current champ Anthony Pettis last December, but he had to say no.
While Grant’s fans are no doubt eager to see him return, the fighter’s certainly taking the right approach in terms of his recovery. You can only fight for so long, so making sure you take of your health, particularly when it concerns one’s brain, is the right move.
Grant is currently on a five fight win streak, which also includes victories over Shane Roller, Carlo Prater, Evan Dunham, and Matt Wiman.