Despite what we know now about the potentially dangerous and long term effects of concussions, TJ Grant has been forced to defend his decision to pass on a UFC on FOX 9 bout with Anthony Pettis, due to the head injury he incurred not long ago. The concussion also cost Grant his chance to fight former champ Benson Henderson at UFC 164 on August 31st, which he initially secured by blasting Gray Maynard and Matt Wiman earlier in 2013. So, in other words, the injury has cost the rising lightweight a great deal already.
While Grant has said he’s feeling better than he was a while back, the rugged vet recently relayed to Fight TV that he’s still feeling effects from the concussion he incurred earlier in the summer. So, considering Grant would have to begin a training camp right away if he was set to fight Pettis on December 14th, there should be no question he’s making the right decision. The former welterweight stated in the interview (transcription via MMA Mania.com):
“I had to make a good decision for myself. Your brain is a different story. I still haven’t trained really, at all. I haven’t been on the mats, at all, for three months. I just want to do what’s best for myself. I’m not starting training unless my brain is 100 percent. It’s hard to say how serious it was. I was never knocked out, I didn’t see stars or anything. I just got hit in the head. I put my head out to stop a sweep. But I also fought two weeks before and I took a couple shots in that fight too, so maybe I shouldn’t have been training, I don’t know. It just happened. I’m just looking to be as safe as possible and get myself back to 100 percent and then resume my career. I accept the risks involved with this job, it’s a contact sport [but] I’m not 100 percent. I still have mild headaches, a little bit of fog. It’s more of just the fog than anything, and when you exercise it can make it worse. I want my long-term health, no matter what. This isn’t fun, I wouldn’t wish it on anyone.”
Despite the setbacks, Grant will enter 2014 as one of the promotion’s top lightweights, after having a breakout campaign.
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