He’s had five fights thus far in his UFC career, but only amassed a 1-4 record overall. The Oklahoma fighter knows that he’s better than the record states, but now after almost a year away from the sport, he’s ready to prove it.
Grice found new life by first dropping down to the featherweight division after noticing that he was fighting an uphill battle as the smaller man in almost every fight at 155 pounds. He then reeled off four wins in a row before getting the call back to the big show.
Unfortunately, things didn’t go his way as Grice lost in his return to the UFC to Ricardo Lamas by TKO in the first round.
As he was training for his next fight last October, Grice suffered a neck injury that put him on the shelf for several months, but to hear him tell it the time off wasn’t self chosen, but it was absolutely necessary.
“I was getting ready for the Nam Phan fight last October and hurt my neck. Had a couple herniated discs and bulging discs in my neck, so I had to take a little time off and it just took a little longer to heal than anticipated. Now I’m 100-percent and ready to go,” Grice told MMAWeekly Radio.
“It was a blessing in disguise because it let me sit back and evaluate things, and change the things I was doing and actually relax and learn more. Get with different people and actually learn and improve my game, and actually myself with that long layoff. It’s actually been a positive.”
Over the last few months, Grice has switched up his training and because of a new schedule through his full-time job as a police officer in Oklahoma, he can even travel a bit more to get some extra help. Outside of his work in his home state, Grice got the chance to work with coach Tom Vaughn and his team at Fit NHB in New Mexico.
Grice also got the chance to experiment with a new diet to help him with his cut to featherweight, and the results have been staggering.
“I love going to the gym again. I have energy, my weight is awesome, I can’t rave enough about how good this diet’s made me feel,” Grice stated.
So as he enters his sixth fight in the UFC, Grice isn’t thinking about the possibility of being cut should he lose, or even going out with the thought of defeat in his mind.
Grice is focused on showing people just what he’s made of and what kind of fighter he is.
“Definitely that this is the real Matt Grice,” stated Grice when asked what message he wants to send with this fight. “I can’t say things like I was off last fight. Ricardo’s a tough guy and he was just a better man that night, but I’ve changed a lot of things for this camp, had a lot of time to work on some other things. I feel like I’m the best fighter I’ve ever been, in the best shape, and just mentally, physically, everything.
“I just don’t see any way I lose this fight.”