Aljamain Sterling vs TJ Dillashaw moved to UFC 280 co-main event
UFC 280 is quickly becoming a very exciting event, as we have just been informed of a second title bout added to the card. That title bout comes between UFC bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling and former multi-time UFC bantamweight champion, no. 2 ranked TJ Dillashaw.
This bout was originally slated for UFC 279, but has been rescheduled for UFC 280, as it appears the UFC is choosing Khamzat Chimaev to headline UFC 279 opposing Nate Diaz.
UFC 280 is to go down on October 22, 2022, live from the Etihad Arena on Fight Island in Abu Dhabi.
Headlining the event is a vacant lightweight championship bout between Charles Oliveira and Islam Makhachev, and this bout between Sterling and Dillashaw is expected to co-headline.
Aljamain Sterling (21-3) vs TJ Dillashaw (17-4)
Aljamain Sterling has become one of the most hated champions in the entire sport, ever since he initially won the belt back in March of 2021 over former champion and current no. 1 ranked Petr Yan.
The problem with this win is that Yan was disqualified during the fourth round of a contest Sterling was losing, thus leaving fans to believe he isn’t the best bantamweight in the sport.
However, Sterling defended it in his next outing, in April of this year, against Yan, via split decision.
This fight also left some fans believing Yan is the best, but it also turned others around to have a higher respect for Sterling.
Then we have TJ Dillashaw, who also became one of the sports most hated fighters in just one days time.
Dillashaw was in the middle of his second title reign when he tested positive for EPO, forcing USADA to suspend him for two years. Upon return however, he defeated then no. 2 ranked (now no. 4) Cory Sandhagen via split decision.
Though some believed Sandhagen won the fight, Dillashaw did get a lot of respect back from fans and media following this encounter. He tore ligaments in his knee during the first round, suffered a nasty cut early on, and he hadn’t fought in two and a half years at that point.
To look that good against a contender that was in the top three after that long away, at 35 years old nonetheless, and without the help of performance enhancing drugs, yeah, most fans have given him a pass at this point.
As you see, both of these men are coming off split decision victories in fights roughly half of the fanbase thought they lost, but they’re clearly two of the top three bantamweights in the world right now.
Both talents also come from wrestling backgrounds; Sterling having competed in NCAA Division III, and Dillashaw having competed in NCAA Division I, and both have evolved their striking games very impressively.
Sterling’s length and kicks make it difficult for his opponents to get close to him, while Dillashaw’s stance switching and elite kickboxing game may be the style needed to do just that.
Sterling stands 5’7” with a reach of 71”, while Dillashaw stands 5’6.5” with a reach of 67”.
Who walks away from UFC 280 the UFC bantamweight champion?
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I became a fan of combat sports when I was 12 years old. I was scrolling through the channels and landed upon versus, where WEC was televised. Urijah Faber fought Jens Pulver for the second time that night. That’s the first fight I saw, and the fight that got me hooked on the sport. Since then, the sport has grown so rapidly, and my goal is to enlighten everyone on what’s going on in the sport today.