T.J. Dillashaw became a two-time bantamweight champion at UFC 217, and the top-ranked talent wants to become a two-division champ, too.
Dillashaw, who knocked out ex-teammate Cody Garbrandt in the second round of the co-main event, didn’t take long to call out flyweight kingpin Demetrious Johnson, who is officially ranked as the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world.
“Demetrious can’t run from this one,” Dillashaw said at the UFC 217 post-fight press conference, per Steven Marrocco and Ken Hathaway of MMA Junkie. “This one’s too big. (Johnson) broke his (title-defense) record. He got to pad himself and break his record. Now, let’s make some money.”
Dillashaw was originally going to challenge Johnson for the 125-pound title earlier this year, but ‘DJ’ turned the fight down, opting instead to defend his belt against Ray Borg at UFC 215, submitting the 24-year-old with a spectacular flying armbar in the main event.
Dillashaw, though, who is on a three-fight win streak, is now in a much better position to call out Mighty Mouse for a superfight.
“(Johnson is) talking about how he wants those seven-figure fights – well, this is it,” Dillashaw said. “Step up, be a man of your word, and let’s get this fight going.”
Johnson is skeptical of whether Dillashaw could make the cut to 125-pounds, but the Californian reaffirmed at the UFC 217 post-fight press conference that he would have no problem making the weight.
“The reason why I look so lean at 135 is the way I work,” Dillashaw said. “I put muscle on to be at 135. I’m not a big (bantamweight). I walk around at 150, but I stack on, and I stay lean. I kept my diet since ‘The Ultimate Fighter.’ I’ve been on a new diet with a new strength and conditioning coach, and he keeps the muscle on me, because that’s what I need.
“When I go to (flyweight), we’re going to have to lean that down. It is a lifestyle change.”
Expect Dillashaw, 31, to break into the pound-for-pound rankings with his win over Garbrandt and possibly challenge Johnson for the flyweight title in 2018.
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