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By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief
UFC featherweight Josh Grispi will have to wait a bit longer to try to turn things around after two straight losses, as he's been forced to pull out of a fight with Matt Grice at UFC 136 in Houston this October.
The UFC announced his removal on Thursday night, though they didn't reveal the nature of his departure from the card.
In his place steps Ultimate Fighter 12 semifinalist Nam Phan, who will look to snap his own two fight losing streak, and get back on track after a particularly bad stretch. In his last seven fights, both before and after his stint on The Ultimate Fighter, Phan is just 2-5. Of course, his first UFC loss to Leonard Garcia was widely considered a robbery, but he followed it up with a loss to Mike Brown last weekend at UFC 133, and he'll make a quick turnaround to try to change course.
Grice will be fighting for his spot on the roster himself, having already tasted a release from the UFC once before. His first stint in the organization saw him go 1-3 in four lightweight fights from 2007 to 2009. After winning four fights elsewhere, he returned to the organization in June, ending up on the wrong end of a TKO at the hands of Ricardo Lamas at UFC on Versus 4.
UFC 136 takes place on Oct. 8 from the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas, headlined by a Lightweight Title rematch between Frankie Edgar and Gray Maynard and featuring a Featherweight Title fight between Jose Aldo and Kenny Florian in the night's co-main event.
Penick's Analysis: It's an unfortunate loss to the card, as Grispi - despite his recent performances - is an exciting and talented young fighter. He's hit a rough patch, there's no question, but it will take just one good performance to turn things around. Still, Phan-Grice is still a solid preliminary card fight, and there's just as much on the line for each as there would have been for Grispi-Grice. And being that it's set for the Facebook prelims, the change won't hurt the card at all, either.
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Jamie Penick, editor-in-chief
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