Over the weekend, in the co-main event of the wickedly stacked UFC 217, arch rivals Cody Garbrandt and TJ Dillashaw finally stepped into the cage together for an anticipated bantamweight title fight. Despite a strong opening round from Garbrandt, Dillashaw ultimately sealed the deal in the second, putting his foe down with a blistering salvo, and capturing the UFC bantamweight title in the process.
In the wake of this fight, Garbrandt quickly began campaigning for an immediate rematch.
“I am the better fighter out there and he was able to capitalize on a low left hand and a right hook,” Garbrandt said at the UFC 217 post-fight presser. “Hats off to TJ He battled back from losing his title and he was a hungry man, but I’m still the better fighter in there and I’ll show that in the rematch.”
“He caught me tonight,” he continued. “He caught me with a punch. I truly am the better fighter. It was me vs. me in there, I’m battling with myself. To throw more punches, to counter, to see all these openings, and I just didn’t pull the trigger. It’s always me vs. me. The only person that beat me is me and I didn’t throw my hands, I didn’t do what I was supposed to do and know how to do in there.”
According to Dillashaw, however, Garbrandt doesn’t deserve this honor. Dillashaw, after all, wasn’t given an immediate rematch when he surrendered the title to Dominick Cruz in January of 2016, and that fight was much closer.
“I just finished him in the second round. He doesn’t deserve a rematch,” Dillashaw said at the post-fight press conference (h/t MMAFighting.com). “He’s very new in this sport, he needs to work his way back up. I should’ve gotten a rematch after that [Dominick] Cruz fight, a very close split decision that I thought I won, and I did not get it. It took me a year-and-a-half — well actually, almost two years — to get it. So yeah, I think he’s going to definitely [need to] build himself back up.”
Do you want to see an immediate rematch between TJ Dillashaw and Cody Garbrandt?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 6/11/2017.