Former bantamweight champion TJ Dillashaw is returning to action this weekend after serving a USADA suspension for EPO. Ahead of his fight with Cory Sandhagen, he says that he feels better now than when he was using.
Dillashaw was suspended for two years and stripped of his title for taking EPO, a performance enhancer known for increasing cardio output. He claimed from the start that this was a one-time thing that he did, only in an attempt to make 125lb for his champ-champ attempt against Henry Cejudo.
Ahead of his return against Sandhagen to headline UFC Vegas 32, TJ says that he feels better now, training without the EPO. Speaking in a pre-fight presser, he says that he would rather his opponents take this PED, given how bad he felt while using it.
“I was dying. There’s no way I’d ever go to 125 again again. I would let every one of my opponents take what I was taking. I couldn’t care less because it did not help me,” Dillashaw said.
“I actually feel ten times better now, than I did going into that fight. I had to lie to myself and tell myself how great I felt going into it, because you’re a mentally tough, best in the world, pound-for-pound fighter, but to be honest I couldn’t care less if any of those guys are taking what I was doing.”
TJ Dillashaw Is Still The Champ
When TJ Dillashaw was suspended for EPO, he was the reigning and defending bantamweight champion. Since then, the title has changed hands a few times, most recently with Aljamain Sterling getting the belt by disqualification against Petr Yan.
However if you ask TJ, he is still the bantamweight champ and this fight against Cory Sandhagen is a title defense. He says that the way Sterling won the belt is not legitimate and that he is still the best in the division.
“This is the real title fight, to be honest. I was not very impressed with Aljamain and Yan in their last fight. I think Cory Sandhagen is the toughest in the weight class right now, and this is a true title fight. I’m the true champ coming back, and it’s time to prove it,” Dillashaw said.
TJ Dillashaw returns to the Octagon this Saturday, against Cory Sandhagen. It will be interesting to see how he looks after having served this suspension.