Anthony Pettis will next defend his lightweight crown against T.J. Grant. | Dave Mandel/Sherdog.com
Anthony Pettis fans can breathe a sigh of relief.
The UFC lightweight champion only suffered a knee sprain during his title-winning performance against Benson Henderson in the UFC 164 main event this past Saturday. Though it was initially uncertain how much damage had been done to the left knee of “Showtime,” UFC officials announced Tuesday night that the 155-pound pacesetter will not require surgery.
Pettis will need to sit out seven to eight weeks in order to recover from the Grade 2 sprain. When the Roufusport product does return to action, he will defend his lightweight crown against T.J. Grant. Pettis called out UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo immediately after beating Henderson at the BMO Harris Bradley Center in Milwaukee, but it appears that booking will have to wait.
The former World Extreme Cagefighting champion had been slated to face Aldo for the featherweight title in the main event of UFC 163 but was forced to withdraw from that matchup due to a right knee injury. Aldo instead defended his title against Chan Sung Jung and earned a fourth-round technical knockout win over “The Korean Zombie last month.”
Meanwhile, Henderson was scheduled to defend the lightweight strap at UFC 164 against Grant before the Canadian pulled out of the fight with an injury, opening the door for Pettis to rematch Henderson. While their first fight was a grueling, five-round affair, Pettis needed less than one frame to dispatch “Smooth” in their rematch, catching Henderson in an armbar from guard and forcing him to verbally submit 4:31 into round one.