Only minutes after successfully defending his lightweight belt at UFC on Fox 7, champ Ben Henderson was informed that his next opponent will be the winner of UFC 160’s Gray Maynard vs TJ Grant bout.
UFC President Dana White announced the news at the post-fight press conference to nix any ideas of an immediate rematch between Henderson and Gilbert Melendez. Although Melendez put up arguably Ben Henderson’s toughest title defense to date, he will have to work his way back into title contention after losing a split decision.
Gray Maynard (11-1-1) is no stranger to title fights, or title eliminators for that matter. Besting Kenny Florian in a lightweight title eliminator bout in August set him up with two consecutive title bouts with then-champ Frankie Edgar. The first bout was a Fight Of The Year draw, which led to a second fight that ended in a fourth round knockout loss.
Maynard rebounded from his loss to Edgar with a five round split decision win over top contender Clay Guida in June of 2012. His May 25 fight against TJ Grant will be his first in nearly a year.
TJ Grant (20-5) is on a 4 fight win streak since debuting in the UFC’s lightweight division, beating the likes of Matt Wiman, Evan Dunham, Carlo Prater, and Shane Roller. He originally fought at welterweight, posting a mediocre 3-3 record while competing in the promotion.
UFC 160 takes place on May 25 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. The main event features a UFC Heavyweight Championship bout between Cain Velasquez and Antonio ‘Bigfoot’ Silva.