TJ Dillashaw was originally set to take on reigning bantamweight champion and bitter rival Cody Garbrandt at UFC 213 this past July, but the bout was scrapped after “No Love” was forced to withdraw with a back injury.
After his bout with Garbrandt fell through, Dillashaw began campaigning for a fight with dominant flyweight king Demetrious Johnson. The UFC had expressed interest in the bout and Dillashaw even began cutting weight in order to be able to hit the 125-pound flyweight limit, but “Mighty Mouse” expressed no interest in the matchup.
Instead, Johnson ended up dispatching Ray Borg earlier this month to break Anderson Silva’s record for the most consecutive title defenses made by a UFC champion.
Dillashaw, on the other hand, is once again set to meet Garbrandt at Nov. 4’s UFC 217 from New York City, but he would still like to share the cage with “Mighty Mouse”:
“I would love that. I wanted it when it should have happened,” Dillashaw said on yesterday’s edition of The MMA Hour. “He’s the pound for pound kingpin, he’s the guy that’s top of the world right now and I think he’s a winnable fight. I think that I could have stopped him from breaking the record and it could have been something great, a big money fight for himself.”
“And yeah, that’s something I’d love to do, especially knowing that I can make the weight, knowing that 125 is a very doable thing.”
That doesn’t mean he’s overlooking Garbrandt, however.
Dillashaw is well aware of how talented “No Love” is, but he also feels as if he’s going to ‘pick him apart’:
“An athlete’s going to go out there and figure out ways to win, see the holes in the game,” Dillashaw said. “I do treat myself more as an athlete than I do a fighter, as a fighter you’re a street thug. Going out there trying to knock someone out, being really aggressive. I’m going to go out there as an athlete just as he said, and pick him apart using that.”
“Don’t get me wrong, he’s very athletic. He’s quick, he’s got some great athletic attributes. I think yeah maybe his downfall is that he’s more of a fighter. He could be more of an athlete; I just don’t know if he’s smart enough to be that way.”
Do you expect Dillashaw to reclaim 135-pound gold, and would you still like to see him take on “Mighty Mouse” one day?