Former bantamweight champion TJ Dillashaw wants an immediate title shot when his two-year drug ban ends in January.
Dillashaw was last seen in the octagon in January 2019, when he lost by first-round knockout to flyweight champion Cejudo.
Things only got worse for him after the fight, as he later tested positive for performance-enhancing drugs. He was handed a two-year suspension from the UFC’s drug regulating body, USADA. Dillashaw has largely stayed out of the public eye since then but with his ban almost up he has been doing the media rounds as of late.
In an interview with ESPN, Dillashaw revealed that he will be campaigning for an immediate shot at 135lb king Petr Yan.
“I want that title fight right away,” Dillashaw said. “You’ve got a guy in Petr Yan who beat someone for the belt that is 0-2 in the division. Jose Aldo has two losses [at 135 pounds]; you beat him for the title and you’re calling yourself a champion? That belt has changed hands every fight. No one there has dominated. That’s my belt, and I want to come back to a title fight.”
Dillashaw went on to shut down rumours of his former friend and coach Urijah Faber.
“That’s a little bit of a joke,” Dillashaw said of fighting Faber. “I wouldn’t mind beating his ass, but he’s not even in the top 15. I’m looking to fight for a title and the guy is not even in the top 15. I guess if [UFC] made it worth my while … I would love to whoop his ass; it would feel good, but it’s kind of a joke.
Top bantamweight contender Cory Sandhagen has also be discussed as a potential comeback opponent for Dillashaw but the two-time bantamweight champion doesn’t think he needs to fight anyone else to earn a title shot.
“[Sandhagen] wants to fight me because he knows that’s his way to the title. The title shot is mine, and he wants to fight me because he wants to fight for the title. If I have to fight someone else, it better be in the top 5.”
The Ultimate Fighter runner up concluded the chat by vowing to regain the bantamweight title, he said.
“I’ll be a three-time bantamweight champion. That’s a guarantee, and it’s going to happen sooner than people think.”
Do you think TJ Dillashaw should get an immediate title shot when his two-year ban is up?