Former bantamweight champion TJ Dillashaw says he has been promised a title shot once he’s served his two-year suspension for doping.

A dominant champion at 135lbs Dillahsaw chose to step down to face flyweight titleholder Henry Cejudo at UFC Brooklyn in January 2019. The 34-year-old suffered an upset loss inside one minute at the hand of Cejudo, who scored an early knockout.

In the aftermath of the humbling defeat, it was revealed Dillashaw tested positive for performance-enhancing drug recombinant human erythropoietin (EPO). As a result, Dillashaw relinquished his bantamweight title and is currently serving a two-year ban due to end in 2021.

Speaking to MMA Junkie Dillashaw revealed he has previously been promised an immediate title shot upon his return from injury, although he realizes that doesn’t mean much, he said.

“I was told I would get that title fight when I came back, but that doesn’t mean anything. I made a mistake – I don’t own rights to anything. But if it was my choice, it would be title fight, if not top-five to prove I should get that title fight. I think that makes sense,”

“I’m hoping they just throw me to the dogs. If I can’t get that title fight, I want someone in the top five so that I can get my title fight. I’m not here to play around. I want my belt back. It’s still mine. I’ll be ready

The two-time UFC champion is looking forward to earning another shot at a title and is confident he’ll capture a third belt inside MMA’s premier promotion, he said.

“Now I guess I get the opportunity to be a three-time champion, which is absurd,” Dillashaw said. “I don’t feel like I should’ve lost it the first time. I get to recapture it all over again. I get to go through this process a (expletive) third time.”

Should TJ Dillashaw get an immediate title shot on his return from suspension?

A lifelong fight fan from Liverpool, England who has been covering mixed martial arts (MMA) and boxing for several years. Follow @JordanEllisUK on Twitter for all the latest fight news, views, interviews and live event coverage.