Former two-time UFC champion TJ Dillashaw notifies UFC of retirement

Photo Courtesy: UFC

TJ Dillashaw has notified the UFC that he is retiring from MMA.

The news of his retirement notification was first reported by Michael Wonsover of ESPN with Ariel Helwani adding further details.

After Dillashaw’s loss to Aljamain Sterling at UFC 280 in October, the fighter revealed a shoulder he dealt with throughout his fight camp with the shoulder frequently popping out during camp and again during the fight with Sterling.

Helwani reports that Dillashaw had surgery on the shoulder about a month ago and his surgeon said it was a very bad injury and would be a long road to recovery with the potential of a follow-up procedure needed.

Dillashaw has opted to retire with his team alerting the UFC.

The 36-year-old began fighting in 2010 after wrestling at the Division I level for California State University, Fullerton. Dillashaw made his pro debut in 2010 and joined the Ultimate Fighter series the following year and lost in the finals to John Dodson by TKO.

Backed by Team Alpha Male, Dillashaw entered the UFC’s bantamweight division and went 5-1 after the loss to Dodson before defeating Renan Barao in May 2014 to win the 135-pound title.

Dillashaw defended the title against Joe Soto and beat Barao in a rematch before losing the title to Dominick Cruz in January 2016.

Dillashaw won the title for a second time in November 2017 at UFC 217 when he beat former teammate Cody Garbrandt by TKO. This happened after a nasty falling out between Dillashaw and Team Alpha Male.

In January 2019, Dillashaw cut down to flyweight and challenged then-champion Henry Cejudo in an attempt to become a two-division champion but was stopped in the first round. After the fight, Dillashaw tested positive for EPO and received a two-year suspension.

He returned in July 2021 and beat Cory Sandhagen and set up his final opportunity to challenge for the bantamweight title when he fought Sterling at UFC 280.

Dillashaw leaves the sport with a record of 17-5.

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Born on a Friday, John Pollock is a reporter, editor & podcaster at POST Wrestling. He runs and owns POST Wrestling alongside Wai Ting.