Rumors of Dillashaw’s impending UFC exit started to spread after his name was dropped from the active roster. Dillashaw’s manager Tiki Ghosn reportedly confirmed the news to multiple outlets, including ESPN and MMA Fighting on Monday.
According to Ariel Hewlani, Dillashaw’s sudden retirement is due to a serious shoulder injury he sustained in the first round at UFC 280. The 36-year-old last fought at the October pay-per-view, where he suffered a TKO loss to bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling.
Dillashaw was 1-1 since returning from a two-year drug-related suspension. Prior to that, he won the UFC bantamweight championship twice. In May 2014, Dillashaw captured UFC gold for the first time as he scored a TKO win over the odds-on favorite Renan Barão. In November 2017, he earned a second-round TKO over former teammate Cody Garbrandt to capture gold for the second time.
He was unable to become a double champion against Henry Cejudo in the UFC’s first ESPN plus event at the start of 2019. Two months later, he was stripped of his bantamweight title after testing positive for a banned substance. He went on to defeat Cody Sandhagen in his return fight at UFC Vegas 32.
Reactions Pour in Over T.J. Dillashaw’s Sudden Retirement
Many UFC fighters reacted to Dillashaw’s retirement news, including former rivals Cody Garbrandt and Henry Cejudo.
“Can’t compete like a real man!,” Garbrandt said on Instagram. “Had ya’ll fooled for years.”
Dillashaw has yet to publicly announce his retirement.