Benson Henderson retained the UFC lightweight title on Saturday night with a split decision win over Strikeforce lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez and there will not be an immediate rematch.
UFC President Dana White announced at the post fight press conference that the winner of the UFC 160 fight between Gray Maynard and TJ Grant will be next for Henderson.
Maynard (11-1-1, 1NC) has gone 9-1-1, 1NC in the UFC and is 1-1-1 in his last three fights. The lost and draw during his last three fights came in title fights against Frankie Edgar and he defeated Clay Guida last year by decision at UFC on FX 4.
He was scheduled to return at UFC 155 at the end of 2012 against Joe Lauzon, but he had to pull out of the fight with an injury. If he defeats Grant at UFC 160, this will be the third title opportunity in the UFC.
Grant (20-5) originally entered the UFC in 2009 as a welterweight and went 3-3 in the division. After losing to Ricardo Almeida at UFC 124, he moved down to the lightweight division and has won four in a row.
During his lightweight winning streak, he has won two of the fights by stoppage and won the fight of the night bonus for his win over Evan Dunham at UFC 152. He most recently defeated Matt Wiman at UFC on FOX 6 by knockout in the first round and it was his second UFC win by knockout.
UFC 160 takes place on May 25th from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas and will be headlined by Cain Velasquez defending the UFC heavyweight title against Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva.