If TJ Dillashaw is able to best Cody Garbrandt for the second consecutive time at UFC 227 next month (Sat. August 4, 2018), the 135-pound champion thinks he should be declared the greatest titleholder the division has ever seen.
Dillashaw recaptured the UFC bantamweight title back in November when he knocked out his former Team Alpha Male teammate Cody Garbrandt in the second round at UFC 217. It extended Dillashaw’s win streak to three and handed Garbrandt the first defeat of his professional mixed martial arts (MMA) career.
Now the pair will headline the UFC 227 pay-per-view (PPV) in their rematch. Dillashaw believes a second win over “No Love” makes him the greatest bantamweight of all time (quotes via MMA Fighting):
“It puts me at the top [of the list as the all-time greatest bantamweight]. I know I’m the best bantamweight ever,” Dillashaw said. “I’ve got a split decision loss to Dominick Cruz and that changed everything, a fight that I thought I won. That changed everything, but I am the best bantamweight in the world.”
“I get to continue to grow my legacy,” he added. “Then I’ll move onto the next challenge and continue to be the best pound-for-pound fighter that I possibly can be.”
Dillashaw’s last defeat inside the Octagon came against Dominick Cruz in 2016. It was Cruz’s first fight back in the UFC in almost two years, and he won back the 135-pound title he never lost. Cruz’s victory came in the form of a split decision. Dillashaw, even two years later, still thinks he won the fight and was robbed on the judges’ scorecards.
Despite the defeat still being a thorn in Dillashaw’s side, he doesn’t think that he needs to rematch Cruz for his legacy to remain intact:
“I don’t think so,” Dillashaw said. “My performances speak for themselves. We’ve got to see if Dominick Cruz can even fight. The guy can’t even get in there anymore, so we’ll see if it comes up, but right now I’ve just got to worry about knocking Cody out in three weeks.”
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