T.J. Dillashaw re-confirms retirement, announces second shoulder surgery

T.J. Dillashaw revealed why he is calling it a career.

By: Kevin Bradley | 2 months ago
T.J. Dillashaw re-confirms retirement, announces second shoulder surgery
T.J. Dillashaw. IMAGO/Damars Carter

Early this morning, former UFC bantamweight champion T.J. Dillashaw posted two pictures of himself golfing on a small putting green to his Instagram page. “This is retirement.” read the first line of the caption. Though Dillashaw hasn’t been shy about his competitive status following his loss to Aljamain Sterling last October, many still held out hope his recovery would go better.

Dillashaw would go on to explain the update in more detail. Despite his optimism going into his shoulder surgery late last year, Dillashaw reports that a second surgery is now required and full recovery is realistically impossible.

T.J. Dillashaws’s full statement

“This is retirement. 

But in all honesty I’m pretty pissed that I didn’t get the chance to choose to retire. I feel that I’m to good to hang ‘em up. Haven’t told many people but I have to go under the knife again for surgery because my first surgery didn’t take. Being told that my shoulder will never be good enough to compete again is hard to hear. I have been delaying my surgery trying to find a better solution.”

TJ Dillashaw’s Instagram, 4/12/23

Once a cheat?

News of T.J. Dillashaw leaving the sport came last December by way of his manager Tiki Ghosn in a statement to Ariel Helwani, but many UFC fighters like middleweight Chris Curtis alleged it was a means to avoid USADA testing. The reality of a second surgery would seemingly put such theories to bed, despite Dillashaw’s history with violating USADA’s drug policy.

Dillashaw entered his title fight with Sterling already injured from training. His left shoulder dislocated multiple times across the bout, after which he announced his first surgery and removal from the UFC’s in-house ranking. During his recovery, he’s managed an OnlyFans page for weight training and technique breakdowns along with his various other brands.

The UFC has yet to comment on Dillashaw’s post. Assuming this is really his exit, he leaves the sport with two dynamic title runs at bantamweight and a record of 17-5.

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About the author
Kevin Bradley
Kevin Bradley

Kevin Bradley is a writer covering Bloody Elbow’s grappling beat. A longtime BJJ hobbyist, he began covering combat sports in 2018 for the Jiu-Jitsu Times with athlete interviews and fight breakdowns. He branched into audio the following year, producing and co-hosting the JJT Podcast for its 100 episode run. After a writing hiatus, occasionally contributing to various sites in the interim, he joined BE in late 2022.

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