T.J. Dillashaw reportedly pulls out of comeback fight against Cory Sandhagen, new main event possibly revealed

Cory Sandhagen (left); TJ Dillashaw (right)
Cory Sandhagen (left); TJ Dillashaw (right)
Johny Payne

T.J. Dillashaw has reportedly pulled out of his comeback fight against Cory Sandhagen. Resultantly, the UFC has been left without a main event for its UFC Vegas 26 fight card on May 8th.

According to C. Contreras Legaspi, an injury coerced T.J. Dillashaw to withdraw from the Cory Sandhagen fight. It was also revealed that the UFC is working on putting together a new main event for the May 8th fight card.

As reported by MMA Fighting, a women’s strawweight bout between Michelle Waterson and Marina Rodriguez is now expected to serve as the UFC Vegas 26 fight card’s main event.

T.J. Dillashaw has taken to his official Instagram account to confirm that he has withdrawn from the fight. Dillashaw revealed that a cut over his eye owing to a headbutt was why he pulled out of the fight.

(Warning: Sensitive imagery)

The former UFC bantamweight champion indicated that he’s sad about withdrawing from his UFC Vegas 26 fight against Cory Sandhagen. T.J. Dillashaw suggested that he hopes to have the fight rescheduled at the earliest.

Presently, it’s unclear as to whether or not the UFC will find a different opponent for Cory Sandhagen and keep him on the May 8th fight card or if he won’t fight on that card. The consensus is that if the UFC refrains from booking Sandhagen against a new opponent on the fight card, they’re likely to reschedule his fight against T.J. Dillashaw for a later date this year.

C. Contreras Legaspi tweeted that the T.J. Dillashaw vs. Cory Sandhagen fight is being rescheduled. However, as of this writing, the UFC hasn't provided a statement regarding the same.

T.J. Dillashaw vs. Cory Sandhagen was a pivotal matchup with serious UFC bantamweight title implications

Cory Sandhagen (left); TJ Dillashaw (right)
Cory Sandhagen (left); TJ Dillashaw (right)

T.J. Dillashaw’s last fight was a first-round TKO loss against Henry Cejudo at UFC Fight Night: Cejudo vs. Dillashaw on January 19th, 2019. The fight was for Cejudo’s UFC flyweight belt, as then-UFC bantamweight champion Dillashaw moved down in weight to challenge for the title.

Not only was T.J. Dillashaw unable to win the UFC flyweight title, but he also failed pre-fight and post-fight drug tests. Dillashaw tested positive for EPO and later admitted that he was indeed guilty of using the PED. Dillashaw was stripped of his UFC bantamweight title and was handed a two-year suspension.

T.J. Dillashaw’s suspension ended on January 19th, 2021, thereby making him eligible to compete in the sport of MMA again. Meanwhile, Cory Sandhagen is coming off one of the biggest wins of his career – a first-round KO win over MMA legend Frankie Edgar at UFC Fight Night: Overeem vs. Volkov on February 6th, 2021.

The T.J. Dillashaw vs. Cory Sandhagen matchup winner would’ve likely received the next shot at the UFC bantamweight title.

Edited by Avinash Tewari
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