A highly-anticipated bantamweight bout between top contenders TJ Dillashaw and Cory Sandhagen has been announced to take place on May 8.
ESPN’s Brett Okamoto broke the news that Dillashaw vs. Sandhagen will be the main event of the UFC Fight Night card on May 8. It’s worth noting that the original main event for this card was a bantamweight bout between Holly Holm and Julianna Pena. But after Holm pulled out and Pena turned her focus towards UFC women’s bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes, the promotion realized that it needed another headliner for this date, and it got a good one when Dillashaw and Sandhagen agreed to put pen to paper and fight each other.
In addition to the Dillashaw vs. Sandhagen bout, which many expect will act as a No. 1 contender fight in the UFC bantamweight division, another 135lbs bout between Rob Font and Cody Garbrandt was booked for May 22.
Dillashaw (16-4) is the former UFC bantamweight champion, but he hasn’t fought since a January 2019 TKO loss to Henry Cejudo at UFC on ESPN+ 1. Following that fight, the now-35-year-old Dillashaw was suspended for two years by USADA for using performance-enhancing drugs. He will now return to the cage about 28 months since he last competed, and it will be interesting to see how he looks in the Octagon given all that time off. Dillashaw’s last victory came back at UFC 227 in August 2018, when he knocked out Garbrandt in the pair’s rematch.
Sandhagen (14-2) is currently ranked No. 2 in the UFC bantamweight division, behind champion Aljamain Sterling and former champion Petr Yan. The 28-year-old Sandhagen is coming off of back-to-back knockout wins over Frankie Edgar and Marlon Moraes, two victories that put him in a great position to get a big name his next time out. Though Sandhagen wanted a title shot, he will settle for the next best thing, a fight with his former training partner Dillashaw. The winner of this fight seems likely to get the next title shot at 135lbs after Yan.
Who do you think wins this bantamweight bout between TJ Dillashaw and Cory Sandhagen?