Exclusive: Tanner-Grove Set for TUF 7 Finale


Evan Tanner weighs-in for UFC 82: Pride of a Champion. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Update 8:00 PM: Kendall Grove has since posted information concerning the fight on the front page of his official website.

Former UFC middleweight champion Evan Tanner will attempt to bounce back from a recent loss to Yushin Okami last month when he takes on Kendall Grove at the The Ultimate Fighter 7 Finale on June 21st.

Sources close to the fight have confirmed to MMA on Tap that bout agreements have been signed. It’s unknown at this time whether or not the fight will be televised or serve as one of the event’s preliminary bouts.

Tanner’s loss to Okami was his first fight in nearly two full years after taking a hiatus from active competition in order to get away from fighting and deal with some personal needs. His break from fighting also involved yet another battle with alcohol addiction, a disease Tanner has been fighting for the majority of his adult life.

Even though Tanner’s anticipated return didn’t go as planned against Okami, the former Team Quest member admitted that he overcame a huge hurdle after the fight as he prevented himself from giving in to his personal demons after the fight.

He’ll take on Grove, who fell victim to an upset knockout at the hands of Jorge Rivera at UFC 80: Rapid Fire in January. It was Grove’s second consecutive loss in as many fights. The middleweight winner of the third season of “The Ultimate Fighter”, Grove will most likely have to defeat Tanner if he wishes to remain with the UFC.

Diego Sanchez is expected to take on American Top Team’s Luigi Fioravanti in a bout that will serve as the show’s main event.

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