TJ Dillashaw Was Training For Renan Barao Before Called For UFC 173
Posted by Joseph Lee on 03.31.2014
He wanted a title fight...
In an interview with MMA Junkie, T.J Dillashaw (9-2 MMA, 5-2 UFC) said that he was training for a shot at bantamweight champion Renan Barao (32-1 MMA, 7-0 UFC) before he was even called for their UFC 173 fight.
On originally being scheduled to fight Takeya Mizugaki: "I wasn't looking past Mizugaki, but me and coach ‘Bang' have been working for Barao anyway. We figured after this fight I would be fighting Barao, so we've already been trying to pick him apart a little bit, work on things I need to with my game to beat Barao, and just change some things up. It's funny that this came about. It was perfect timing."
On getting the call: "I didn't even know about it. I got called [on Thursday] after practice, and I was told that's who I'm fighting next. I didn't have to think about it at all. I've never turned down a fight, especially one of this caliber. I'm ecstatic over the fight."
On what the title shot means to him: "This is everything to me. This is what I've been training for since I was 8 years old, to be the best in the world. Team Alpha Male needs a belt in the gym, and it would be very cool to bring the first one in."