Taking main event status in the promotion’s second consecutive week at the Apex facility — a high-stakes, potential bantamweight title-eliminator between the surging #2 ranked contender, Cory Sandhagen, and the returning former two-time division gold holder, T.J. Dillashaw.
The pairing of Sandhagen and Dillashaw was originally slated to headline a UFC Vegas 26 event back in May until Dillashaw was forced to withdraw from the bout after he had suffered a laceration to his right eye after finding himself on the receiving end of an inadvertent headbutt during a training session.
For Aurora finisher, Sandhagen, the dynamic striker is in the midst of a two-fight winning spree following his first round rear-naked choke loss to current 135lb best, Aljamain Sterling last June at UFC 250 — taking a pair of spectacular, highlight-reel knockouts over former title challenger, Marlon Moraes and former lightweight champion, Frankie Edgar.
Completing his two-year retroactive USADA suspension in January of this year, Dillashaw is slated to return for the first time since an unsuccessful flyweight title siege against Henry Cejudo at UFC Fight Night Brooklyn back in January of 2019 where he suffered a first round knockout loss. Post-fight, Dillashaw returned a positive test result for the banned substance, erythropoietin (EPO) — resulting in his two-year suspension.
The Angels Camp native’s most recent bantamweight outing came in the form of a first round knockout win over two-time foe and former champion, Cody Garbrandt in the main event of UFC 227 in August of 2018 — where he successfully defending his title.
UFC Vegas 23 Results: Sandhagen vs. Dillashaw
Main Card: (ESPN/ESPN+ 7 p.m. ET)
Bantamweight: T.J. Dillashaw def. Cory Sandhagen via split decision (48-47 x2, and 47-48)
Bantamweight: Raulian Paiva def. Kyler Philips via majority decision (29-28 x2, and 28-28)
Featherweight: Darren Elkins def. Darrick Minner via second round (3:48) via TKO (ground strikes)
Flyweight: Maycee Barber def. Miranda Maverick via split decision (29-28 x2, and 28-29)
Bantamweight: Adrian Yanez def. Randy Costa via second round (2:11) TKO (strikes)
Preliminary Card: (ESPN/ESPN+ 4 p.m. ET)
Middleweight: Brendan Allen def. Punahele Soriano via unanimous decision (30-27 x2, and 29-28)
Middleweight: Nassourdine Imavov def. Ian Heinisch via second round (3:09) TKO (strikes)
Welterweight: Mickey Gall def. Jordan Williams via first round (2:57) submission (rear-naked choke)
Bantamweight: Julio Arce def. Andre Ewell via second round (3:45) TKO (strikes)
Flyweight: Sijara Eubanks def. Elise Reed via first round (3:49) TKO (ground strikes)
Strawweight: Diana Belbita def. Hannah Goldy via unanimous decision (30-27 x3)