TJ Dillashaw fires away at “powder puff champion” Dominick Cruz for picking opponents

By Russell Ess - October 27, 2016

Current number one UFC ranked bantamweight TJ Dillashaw is more than upset over the recently announced bantamweight title fight between champion Dominick Cruz and number 6 UFC ranked contender Cody Garbrandt. Dillashaw is looking to rematch Cruz after the two fought a close five-round title fight at UFC Fight Night 81 back in January where Cruz walked away with the belt by judge’s split decision.

TJ Dillashaw

Now with the bantamweight title fight between Cruz and Garbrandt taking place at UFC 207, Dillashaw is simply baffled seeing Cruz in the position he feels he should rightfully be in.

ufc bantamweight champion

“It’s a tough one to swallow, especially because I feel I’ve done my job; I’ve done what I’m supposed to do,” Dillashaw said in a feature by E. Spencer Kyte of Fansided. “I had a very close fight with Dominick Cruz where the owners of the UFC told me they thought I won the fight, so that kind of burns deep. Not only should I have that belt, but I should be getting paid as the champion and to see Dominick Cruz being put on a Ronda Rousey card and about to get hooked up with a really big fight, it definitely bugs me.

“I’ve put in the hard work, so it’s a tough one, man. It really, really does suck.”

Dillashaw in unsure how Garbrandt in his position hopped over a handful of higher ranked competitors including himself.

Cody Garbrandt flag

“What’s the reasoning behind skipping five guys?” Dillashaw questioned. “Why does No. 6 get to fight for a world title when he beat No. 11? He hasn’t beaten anybody in the Top 5.

“Nothing against Cody Garbrandt; it’s not his fault,” Dillashaw said of his former Team Alpha Male training partner. “All of us should be pushing for the title — that’s the ultimate goal — but I blame Dominick Cruz and the UFC for letting this happen. I really don’t understand why the UFC is letting Dominick Cruz pick the fights he wants.”

Although the former champion respects fighters for their hustle who are talking up big money fights and getting title shots such as Conor McGregor, who will be fighting for the lightweight title without a single fight in the lightweight division, he is not fond of how it is affecting the sport.

“It’s a mockery – it’s a mockery of the sport,” Dillashaw vented. “The sport should be about the best guys on the planet (fighting each other). What’s the point of having rankings (if they don’t factor into matchups)?”

The Elevation Fight Team member says that his only place for mixed martial arts competition is with the best in the UFC. However, with the situation he is in, it is truly frustrating.

“I’m a company man, dude — the UFC is the best organization in the world for mixed martial art; I want to be in the UFC and if you think of the best fighters in the world, you think of UFC champions — but I wish it would just pay off a little more. I want to be the best fighter in the world and that’s with the UFC. They’ve done a great job and I’m very grateful for the position I’m in, but this f–king sucks.”

When talking about a rematch with the current champion of his division, Dillashaw says that Cruz is afraid of a second bout because he knows who really won their fight.

TJ Dillashaw Dominick Cruz

“I feel like this is partially a Dominick Cruz thing — he’s the one picking the fights and being a prima donna instead of just fighting the best guys,” said Dillashaw. “My bet is that he’s going to try to retire before he has to rematch me.

“I think he knows that I won that fight,” Dillashaw stated. “He admitted it to me after the fight — he said congratulations and said that he didn’t do too bad after a long layoff, so him and his coaches both knew that I won that fight and he’s trying to be on top for as long as he can without having to fight me.”

Dillashaw added that by taking out all the top-ranked opponents in the bantamweight division, it should be clear to the real fans who is really fighting championship caliber fights.

“You can have a powder puff champion who is going to pick Top 10 guys or you can have me — the real champion — who is going to beat everyone that is ranked No. 2. You tell me who is acting more like a champion?


Cody Garbrandt Dominick Cruz TJ Dillashaw