Morning Report: T.J. Dillashaw wants immediate title shot upon his return, Petr Yan and Aljamain Sterling respond

Morning Report: T.J. Dillashaw wants immediate title shot upon his return, Petr Yan and Aljamain Sterling respond

In 2019, T.J. Dillashaw relinquished his bantamweight title after testing positive for EPO in relation to his flyweight title fight against Henry Cejudo and was suspended for two years by USADA. Dillashaw will be eligible to return to fighting this upcoming January, and when he is able to come back, Dillashaw is hoping to get right back to where he was before his suspension.

“I want that title. I want it right away,” Dillashaw told ESPN this week. “You’ve got a guy Petr Yan who beat someone for the belt that is 0-2 in the division. Jose Aldo has two losses [at 135 pounds] and he beat him for the title so how are you calling yourself a champion? To me you’re an interim champion. That belt has changed hands every fight. There’s been no one there sitting there being dominant. That is my belt so I want to come back, I want that title fight.

“I know Aljamain Sterling and Yan are fighting, which is deserved. Sterling’s been looking good, he’s dominant. Get that fight out of the way and I want the winner. I was hoping they were going to fight the 12th but that got pushed back so we’ll see what comes of it. There’s no messing around. I don’t want no tune-up fights.”

Since Dillashaw’s removal from the division, 135 pounds has been in a state of tumult. The man who knocked Dillashaw out at flyweight, Cejudo, moved up and won the vacant belt with a stoppage of Marlon Moraes. Cejudo then defended his title against former champion Dominick Cruz (who himself was coming off a loss) and then promptly retired from the sport, vacating the bantamweight belt once again. In the aftermath, the UFC created yet another fight for the vacant title, this time between Petr Yan and Aldo, who was on a two-fight losing streak at the time. Yan ended up winning the belt and was supposed to face Aljamain Sterling at UFC 256 but the fight was postponed due to visa issues for Yan. With the constant upheaval going on in the division, Dillashaw’s contention is that Yan is a paper champion right now.

“He’s well-rounded. He’s good,” Dillashaw said. “Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying he’s not good. The division is a great division right now. We’ve got some great guys in it. I’m just saying there’s not a champion. You can’t beat a guy that’s 0-2 in the weight class and call yourself the undisputed champion. Even when Cejudo came in and won, he beat (Marlon) Moraes and sh*t, Moraes was no champion. He’s got the cardio of French Bulldog, all (Cejudo) had to do was outlast him for a round and then he beat him. So (Cejudo) beat him and then he beat (Dominick) Cruz coming off the couch, ready to retire. He leaves and now Petr Yan beats a guy that’s 0-2. To be honest, the weight class is f*cked up. It’s ready for me to come back. I’m ready to throw a wrench in it all get my belt back.”

Unsurprisingly, many other top level bantamweights are not in agreement with Dillashaw. Following his interview, a number of UFC bantamweights weighed in on Dillashaw’s remarks, including the current champion.

Wait in line, cheater https://t.co/wskArkbG05

— Petr “No Mercy” Yan (@PetrYanUFC) December 3, 2020

This deserves a lol ! At least @TJDillashaw gets it, not like flavor Flave stunt double @funkmasterMMA who wants to butter up @PetrYanUFC potato head. Skip him and give it to TJ. And I might just make a comeback. In all you guys all suck! merry Christmas https://t.co/xJ5d6ts0j8

— Henry Cejudo (@HenryCejudo) December 3, 2020

Henry…the REAL competition was going to put Triple Chump “the messenger” in the paper shredder where it belonged. Neither you, or Paper Yan were ever champs in my eyes. And TJ’s been a cheater since his Dodson KO. The entire Alpha Male roster knows this!
The truth sucks, I know https://t.co/tEnjZDZKv8

— Aljamain Sterling (@funkmasterMMA) December 3, 2020

When you cheat your entire .@UFC career, and comfortably sit out for 2 years, with MILLIONS you won from cheating, I think two things!
.@TJDillashaw is:
1) In need of another paycheck and ready to take a sauce-less asskicking for it.
2) He discovered another work around in 2yrs ‍♂️

— Aljamain Sterling (@funkmasterMMA) December 3, 2020

Is MMA the only sport where cheaters get rewarded, after time served?? Seriously wondering about this. Imagine going to jail for a assaulting someone, doing x years, coming out, and the warden hooks you up with a chance to make half a milly+ as soon as you walk out. Wow.

— Aljamain Sterling (@funkmasterMMA) December 3, 2020

I’m not saying anyone is scared but I think . @TJDillashaw is looking to avoid having to fight someone he had trouble with in training
*Enter The Sandman* .@cors_life

— Aljamain Sterling (@funkmasterMMA) December 3, 2020

Sterling bringing up Cory Sandhagen also makes sense as that is a fighter many had earmarked as a possible opponent for Dillashaw upon his return, and though Dillashaw obviously were prefer a title fight immediately, if he has to take another opponent first, the former champion seems to be amenable to Sandhagen.

“He wants to fight me because he knows that’s his way to the title,” Dillashaw said. “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.”

Dillashaw is eligible to fight again on Jan. 18 of next year.

TOP STORIES

Comeback. Nick Diaz’s manager ‘99.99999’ percent certain Diaz makes his UFC return in 2021.

Goals. Khabib Nurmagomedov wants to build his new promotion into UFC feeder league.

USADA. Yair Rodriguez suspended six months by USADA for failing to file location for random testing.

Upset. Marvin Vettori calls Israel Adesanya’s move up to light heavyweight ‘kind of bullsh*t’.

Truth. Jamahal Hill blasts marijuana sanctions as ‘waste of resources,’ ‘goofy as f*ck’.

VIDEO STEW

UFC Vegas 16 Virtual Media Day.

ONE doing fight their own Embedded-style series.

Meet the Monkey King.

Vettori on TMZ.

LISTEN UP

It’s Time. Bruce Buffer interviews Roy Jones Jr. about Tyson fight and Anderson Silva.

SOCIAL MEDIA BOUILLABAISSE

Couple of fighters weighing in on the Yair situation with USADA.

Its not the hardest to keep up to date, but ive a had a whereabouts violation for a test I did, definitely flaws in it

— Arnold billy allen (@Arnoldbfa) December 3, 2020

Could also be that he wasn’t around for testing. I am on my second strike aswell. They will show up at your house at 7 AM or 7 PM and if you are not there and can’t meet them at that time it’s a strike. It’s tough to update your whereabouts every time you go eat dinner.

— Alan Jouban (@AlanJouban) December 3, 2020

Izzy taking shots at Paulo Costa.

I’m probably having my first child around June 2021. Yaaaaay!! https://t.co/ajT9MXZxK2

— Israel Adesanya (@stylebender) December 4, 2020

Do the math…
I’m not paying child support either! pic.twitter.com/AcEUEsydWU

— Israel Adesanya (@stylebender) December 4, 2020

Curtis Blaydes talking trash to Jon Jones.

Sexual chocolate would be Nate Robinson at heavyweight pic.twitter.com/RaCvU35aj6

— Curtis Blaydes (@RazorBlaydes265) December 4, 2020

Chris Leben with the jokes.

sure seems that way. I wish I caught covid before that Silva fight.

— Chris Leben (@ChrisLebenMMA) December 3, 2020

Wholesome.

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Brian Ortega (@briantcity)

I will never get used to GSP with hair.

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Georges St-Pierre (@georgesstpierre)

UFC 256 Fight Poster.

Who are you taking next weekend!? Your #UFC256 poster has just released

[ Decemeber 12th – LIVE on #ESPNPlus PPV ] pic.twitter.com/tnJaifB6eC

— UFC (@ufc) December 3, 2020

FIGHT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Francisco Figueiredo (11-3-1, 1 NC) vs. Jerome Ribera (10-3); UFC Fight Night, Jan. 20.

FINAL THOUGHTS

Highly recommend watching that Dillashaw interview. He gives what appear to be very honest answers, especially about how he would probably have justified the EPO use had he never gotten caught. I found it fascinating.

Thanks for reading, enjoy the fights, and see y’all on Monday.

EXIT POLL

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