UFC 166: Dana White Says Melendez's Performance a 'Huge Setback for T.J. Grant'
It must have been a bittersweet 15 minutes for T.J. Grant as he watched Gilbert Melendez and Diego Sanchez slug it out. On one hand, the fight-fan in him was probably as excited as the rest of us. On the other, he now has to process the news that Dana White is saying he might not get an immediate title shot upon his return to action (h/t Steven Marrocco of MMAJunkie.com).
“T.J. Grant’s in one of those unfortunate situations where he had the title shot and had to pull out twice,” said White. “He’s in Limbo. He might come back and have to fight another fight. We’ve got to keep this thing rolling.”
This, of course, is nothing new. If fans and fighters have learned anything by now, it’s that the match-making in the UFC is a very fluid process. What seems like a sure thing today could drastically change tomorrow.
Anyone suffering a concussion, such as Grant, should always heed their doctor’s advice. If more time is needed to recover, as was the case for Grant when he was not cleared to fight Anthony Pettis, then it’s better safe than sorry.
But after UFC 166, another element comes into play. Gilbert Melendez defeated Diego Sanchez in one of the greatest fights in MMA history. Whenever that happens, the winner is a hot commodity—in this case, it means that Melendez may very well get the next crack at the winner between Pettis and Josh Thompson.
When asked if the performance of Melendez puts him on the fast track for another title shot, White made it plain and clear.
“Yeah. It’s a huge setback for T.J. Grant.”
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