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Anthony Pettis vs. Josh Thomson set for UFC on FOX 9 headliner

Yesterday, UFC lightweight contender T.J. Grant (21-5 MMA, 8-3 UFC) announced via twitter that he is still not 100% and will not be able to compete against Anthony “Showtime” Pettis at this December’s UFC on FOX 9 event in Sacramento, California.

With Grant unable to compete, the UFC has given former Strikeforce lightweight champion, Josh Thomson, the opportunity to vie for the 155-pound strap.

The UFC’s change in plans was revealed on FOX Sports 1’s “FOX Sports Live,” shortly after Grant’s tweets.

Josh Thomson (20-5 MMA, 3-1 UFC) returned to the UFC in emphatic fashion this April, scoring a second-round TKO over former title challenger Nate Diaz at the UFC on FOX 7 event in San Jose, California.

Prior to his octagon return, Thomson went 9-3 while fighting under the Strikeforce banner, which saw him win and hold the promotions lightweight belt for a little over a year in 2008-2009.

Meanwhile, Anthony “Showtime” Pettis (17-2 MMA, 4-1 UFC) was most recently seen in action at UFC 164 in his hometown of Milwaukee, where he submitted Benson Henderson in the first-round to earn the UFC lightweight championship.

“Showtime” was given the opportunity to fight Benson Henderson at UFC 164 after T.J. Grant suffered a concussion in training, forcing the Canadian off the August card.

Before defeating “Smooth” for the second time in his career, Pettis had scored back-to-back finishes over Donald Cerrone and Joe Lauzon respectively.

UFC on FOX 9 takes place December 14 live from the Sleep Train Arena (formerly ARCO Arena) in Sacramento, California. Pettis vs. Thomson will serve as the events headliner which airs live on FOX.

This article appeared first on BJPENN.COM