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Cody Garbrandt says he knocked out T.J. Dillashaw already, wouldn’t mind doing it again

Matthew Wells



While the new UFC Bantamweight Champion Cody Garbrandt is still soaking in his virtuoso performance against Dominick Cruz at UFC 207, his feelings about his potential future opponent and former Team Alpha Male partner, T.J. Dillashaw, have not changed.

“I’ll get satisfaction whoopin’ his ass, that’s for sure – and just what he did to the team, man. He sold out,” Garbrandt stated.

In 2015, Team Alpha Male experienced a civil war of sorts when then-champion T.J. Dillashaw and coach Duane Ludwig left California for Colorado to join Team Elevation. Duane Ludwig and Team Alpha Male creator Urijah Faber were falling out, which left Dillashaw with a tough choice for his career – either remain loyal to the squad who helped him reach the top of the division, or follow Ludwig who he felt was the one to take his career and skills to the next level. T.J. made the decision to move with Ludwig to the MusclePharm sponsored Team Elevation, which did not sit well with his friends in Colorado, particularly, Garbrandt who is all about loyalty.

Speaking on the UFC Unfiltered podcast, Garbrandt didn’t hold back when speaking on how he felt the whole situation played out. “He sold out. He’s a sellout. He sold his friends, everybody that got him there, that got him to where he was at. He saw a little bit of money and fuckin’ ran and ran away. There’s me, always there. The uncrowned champ. I was the uncrowned champ when he was there.”

Before earning the real UFC strap, Garbrandt considered himself the “uncrowned champion” at Team Alpha Male while T.J. Dillashaw was carrying the UFC gold. Even though Dillashaw became the champion by defeating Renan Barao in spectacular fashion, Garbrandt feels he wasn’t the legitimate champion. “He never even won the title,” stated Garbrandt. “Truly, Cruz never lost it, so T.J. was never really World Champion. Cruz was the World Champion. He never lost his belt in the Octagon. I’m the one who went out there and ripped it from him.”

Cody’s unwavering loyalty to his team has been on display many times throughout his UFC career. That word “loyalty” set Garbrandt off when Conor McGregor stirred up a war of words with Urijah Faber on The Ultimate Fighter. McGregor was trying to convince Faber that Dillashaw was only out for himself, right before he left for Colorado and friendships dissolved.

Now, with the UFC gold wrapped around his waist, Garbrandt has no qualms with putting his hands on Dillashaw inside the Octagon where it truly counts. “I don’t mind whoopin’ T.J.’s ass, ya know? He was a cancer to our team and what he tried to do to destroy it. I’ll make that shit personal too.”

While what occurs during hard sparring sessions are largely kept under wraps between teammates, when affiliations change and battle lines are drawn, unwritten rules are disregarded. According to Garbrandt, he got the best of Dillashaw in a training session to the point he briefly separated Dillashaw from consciousness. “I’ll spare everybody the $60 to buy the Pay-Per-View and put out the video of me knockin’ his ass out when I was 1-0.” Garbrandt explained, “He was saying he made me cry in practice. That motherfucker never made me cry. Ya know, I wasn’t the one lookin’ at the ceiling – ya know, on my back looking at the ceiling knocked out.”

In an era where fights that earn top billing are not always matchups that make the most sense from a rankings perspective, but rather fights that can generate heavy interest from the casual fan, a meeting between Garbrandt and Dillashaw would earn a check mark in both boxes. Immediately after winning the title at UFC 207, Garbrandt stated he wished to give Cruz a rematch because he earned the right by retaining the title for such a long period. While not taking that offer off the table, he now understands he has a few options at play. “I believe T.J. would be a good fight, a good storyline. Also, Jose Aldo expressed he wanted to fight me and Dom was talking about going up and fighting him. So, I don’t know, there’s a lot of possibilities,” said Garbrandt.

“I’m going to sit down with Dana and Sean, my management team and coaches and see what’s the best fight for me. I just want to enjoy this. I’m a champion now and it’s my job and duty, my responsibility to defend it against what fight makes the most sense for me.”

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Felice Herrig vs. Karolina Kowalkiewicz in the works for UFC 223



UFC 223 looks to add a variety of intriguing bouts. With Paul Felder vs. Al Iaquinta reportedly set for the unannounced UFC 223 card, the promotion looks to add a high stakes female flyweight match-up. According to, sources confirmed a bout between Felice Herrig and Karolina Kowalkiewicz, is in the works for the pay-per-view card.


Assuming the match-up does come to be, both women have much to gain from a victory. For Herrig, she currently sits on a four-fight win streak. A streak in which the strawweight contender defeated Kailin Curran, Alexa Grasso, Justine Kish, and Cortney Casey. The MMA veteran, Herrig, began fighting professionally in 2009. As of late, her issues with the marketing machine that is the UFC have intensified.

After demonstrating her technical prowess over Justine Kish at UFC Fight Night 122: Chiesa vs. Lee, Herrig put her emotions on display. She stated at the post-fight media scrum, “Sometimes, I feel like, I’m not young and beautiful enough for the UFC to want to promote me. And it’s sad because I’ve really worked so hard to be here and it’s hard to see these people who’ve not been through what I’ve been through. Who just got into the UFC at the right time. They’re getting all these opportunities and I see how hard I work to get here and it’s just like, it doesn’t matter. I just feel like, ‘I’m not pretty enough and I’m not getting any younger'”.

A frustrated Felice Herrig then spoke to in December. She claimed, “Aside from (former UFC women’s strawweight champ) Joanna (Jedrzejczyk), I’m the only strawweight who’s gone on a four-fight winning streak. That’s a fact. At this point, I want to fight someone in the top 10. It doesn’t really make sense for me to keep fighting girls that are ranked below me. That’s the whole point. If I want to keep working my way up. I fight the most dangerous girls outside the top 10”. The #9 ranked women’s flyweight has a point. In her UFC career, she recorded one loss in six appearances. Yet, she has one co-main event booking, while fighters like Michelle Waterson, booked the main event in her second UFC bout. In Waterson’s third bout, she received a co-main event scheduling. Understandably, Felice Herrig is upset with her situation.

Later in her interview, Herrig brought up Kowalkiewicz as a potential next opponent. “For whatever reason, I really want to fight Karolina. I just think that would be an exciting fight… Stylistically, I really like that fight. She’s ranked above (me), and it may be a good gauge for me,” she stated. Right now, it looks like Herrig is close to getting what she wants.

Kowalkiewicz last fought in her native country of Poland on the UFC Fight Pass card, UFC Fight Night 118: Cowboy vs. Till, in October. The Polish star defeated Jody Esquibel, after losing consecutive contests to former UFC female strawweight champion, Joanna Jedrzejcyk and Claudia Gadelha, respectively.

A win for either makes a good case for the next or an eventual title challenger. Kowalkiewicz holds a victory over current division champion, Rose Namajunas. While a win for Herrig would further establish her impressive win streak and undoubtedly give her the boost in the rankings she deserves.

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Douglas Lima found out about change to co-main event at Bellator 192 from the internet



Bellator 192 fight card has gone through a shake-up over the past week. Bellator president Scott Coker revealed last week that the scheduled welterweight title fight between Rory MacDonald and champion Douglas Lima will now be serving as the co-main event and the heavyweight matchup between Chael Sonnen and Rampage Jackson would instead take top billing. At the time no explanation was made for the change. Monday Douglas Lima was a guest on The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani to discuss this change.

“I was little bummed, but it is what it is, it’s business you know. I was pretty excited you know? Being the main event, having Rampage fight as the co-main event, I was happy there. Then I was bummed out that they changed it back to the co-main event. It’s not going to change a thing for me, I’m just focusing on the fight.”

Lima has been notoriously looked over in the eyes of fight fans. A longtime member of Bellator and a two-time champion has not gotten the notice he deserves and hopes to get.

“I found out through the internet, nobody tells me anything, I didn’t know. the same thing happened in New York, I thought my fight would be before the two main events there, but it ended up being the first fight of the night on Pay-Per-View. Hopefully, it doesn’t take anything away from the fight, you know spotlight and stuff.”

Lima is looking to make all the naysayers take notice at Bellator 192 that takes place at The Forum in Inglewood, Califonia on January 20th.

“This is the fight I’ve been waiting for for a long time. To get my name out there, to get people to know who I am. I’ve been delivering a lot of good fights, fights fans like to watch but no attention yet. I’m hoping though that after a win over Rory this week it will really put my name out there and show all these welterweights out there that I am for real.”

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Fight Announcements

Al Iaquinta vs. Paul Felder rescheduled for UFC 223 in April



MMA fans around the world wept in deep sorrow when Al Iaquinta withdrew from a bout scheduled for UFC 218 against Paul Felder. Weep no more, for Paul Felder faces Al Iaquinta at UFC 223. Rumblings behind the match-up, first reported by, came Sunday night before confirmed the bout scheduled for unannounced pay-per-view card, later in the evening.


The original bout fell through due to a severe knee injury to Iaquinta. He spoke to BJ Penn Radio about the injury nearly a week before the December 2nd, PPV event in Detriot. The Long Island real estate agent claimed, “I tore my PCL and my MCL maybe three or four months ago… for me to really put in a full training camp and do what I need to do, I would’ve had to just focus on fighting and physical therapy… it was the kind of thing where all roads led to me not kind of taking a risk and fighting on December 2nd”.

Iaquinta went on to say, “I kind of accepted the fight, but I never signed a bout agreement… I was kind of told I had to give them an answer pretty quick. It was a fight I thought I really wanted. I thought it was a good stylistic match-up for me, so I accepted the fight, and then thinking about it over the course of a day, we realized it probably wasn’t a smart decision for my health, for everything”.

An outspoken lightweight, he is not the first of his kind. Al Iaquinta is no stranger to idly waiting on the sideline for the UFC to make a move. Contract disputes and other bad strokes of luck left the Serra-Longo with three octagon appearances since 2015. The feud between Iaquinta and the promotion comes as a surprise when looking at the credentials of the aforementioned fighter. With an octagon record of 8-2, he earned notoriety as one of the best lightweights in the world. During his time in the UFC, he defeated Kevin Lee, Ross Pearson, Joe Lauzon, Jorge Masvidal, and most recently Diego Sanchez.

His opponent, “The Irish Dragon”, Paul Felder, holds an impressive UFC record of his own. At 7-3, Felder defeated tough competition as well. His record notes wins over Daron Cruickshank, Jason Saggo, Stevie Ray, and Charles Oliveira. Even more impressive than his record, his knockout ratio. At this stage of his career, Felder knockouts 55% of his opponents (10 knockouts in 18 career pro bouts).

Like his opponent Iaquinta, Paul Felder has a separate career outside of fighting. As many should notice, Felder found a role as a color commentator with the promotion he fights for. Following the footsteps in a long line of fighters before him, Felder announced multiple events alongside another new addition to the UFC broadcast team, Brendan Fitzgerald.

PPV card, UFC 223 and its location are not official yet. Despite a lack of an announcement, the event takes place in Brooklyn, New York at the Barclays Centre, according to multiple reports. Currently, the card features no official bouts. Reports state Felice Herrig vs. Karolina Kowalkiewicz (per Jim Edwards), and Evan Dunham vs. Mairbek Taisumov (per Farah Hannoun) are both in the works for UFC 223.

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