Former bantamweight champion TJ Dillashaw might eventually shed his reputation for abusing performance-enhancing drugs, according to UFC president Dana White.
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Before Dillashaw (17-4 MMA, 13-4 UFC) challenged champion Aljamain Sterling (21-3 MMA, 13-3 UFC) for the title at UFC 280, which takes place Saturday in Abu Dhabi, White explained how Dillashaw handled his positive drug test and subsequent punishment exceptionally well in comparison to the standard.
Recombinant Human Erythropoietin was detected in TJ Dillashaw, in a test
Following a failed attempt to challenge Henry Cejudo for the flyweight title in 2019, Dillashaw, now 36, tested positive for recombinant human erythropoietin, or EPO. Due to the positive test, the USADA suspended TJ Dillashaw for two years.
TJ Dillashaw blamed his poor decision on his struggle to lose 10 pounds and drop to flyweight while openly admitting to using illegal substances. It’s hard to hold grudges, because I did it,” Dillashaw told MMA Juice mid-suspension in 2020. “I made the mistake. I dirtied my name myself.
It’s not on anybody else. I gave them fuel. It hurts, but that’s part of the payment for how I dirtied my name up. I’ve got to live with it now. Trying to hold onto those grudges, that’s like holding onto the past. I’ve already moved on. I’m ready to push for that next goal and getting my belt back.”
If Dillashaw prevails, he will hold three bantamweight championships for the first time in UFC history.
TJ Dillashaw will have the opportunity to do that on Saturday.
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Dillashaw is 1-0 after his suspension and several shoulder operations, including a triumph over Cory Sandhagen. He’ll become the first athlete in UFC history to hold three reigns at the bantamweight championship if he triumphs.
TJ Dillashaw, a 36-year-old American male fighter with a 17-4-0 pro MMA record, competes in mixed martial arts. On Saturday, October 22, 2022, Dillashaw will square off against Aljamain Sterling at UFC 280 in a bantamweight contest. He has a winning percentage of 59% with 17 victories, including 9 knockouts, 4 submissions, and 7 decisions.