Former UFC Bantamweight Champion TJ Dillashaw is a little over a week away from challenging current champion Cody Garbrandt for the gold at UFC 217.
Garbrandt once accused Dillashaw of seriously injuring then teammate Chris Holdsworth during a training session and Dillashaw says that it isn’t true.
“They said I got submitted by Chris Holdsworth, and then I kneed him in the back of the head while he was grounded and after the round, whatever it may be,” Dillashaw said on The MMA Hour. “So you’re telling me I’m kneeing people in the back of the head in between rounds and ruining their careers, but you want me to stay on your team? You’re not going to kick me off the team, you led the fight for me to stay on the team and you’re angry that I left. How does that make any sense whatsoever? If I’m a loose cannon like that, how would that make any sense whatsoever, how would you be angry at me? if that was the case, if I was doing those kind of things, I should be kicked off the team. Instantly. There’s no way that would be something that is acceptable. Have I been overly aggressive in some sparring sessions? Yes, I have. There’s things, there’s punches and things I’ve thrown that’s been too aggressive and I’ve gotten to where I’ve had to tell myself, yeah, I shouldn’t have done that, kind of thing. But I’ve never blatantly ever deliberately kneed someone in the back of the head and tried to end their career. I’ve gotten too aggressive in sparring, which we all have.”
While Gabrandt and Dillashaw have both commented on the matter, the one who hasn’t commented yet is Holdsworth himself.
Dillashaw is also quick to point out that hardcore sparring sessions are a put of the culture at Team Alpha Male.
“I got thrown into the lion’s den when I got to Alpha Male,” Dillashaw said. “My first sparring session was with Joe Benavidez, Chad Mendes and those guys, just bleeding from my face, its not like they took it easy on me. It was one of those things where we sparred 3-4 days a week, and we got thrown in there and that’s what made me as tough as I am.”
UFC 217 takes place on Saturday, November 4 from Madison Square Garden in New York, New York with Michael Bisping and Georges St. Pierre headlining. Fightful is providing live coverage of the event, with a post-show podcast to follow.