Former two-time UFC bantamweight champion, T.J. Dillashaw has been forced out of his May 8th UFC Vegas 26 main event against the surging, Cory Sandhagen with an injury preventing him from making his first Octagon outing since UFC Fight Night Brooklyn back in January of 2019.
Dillashaw was scheduled to headline the UFC Apex facility event against streaking finisher, Sandhagen in a potential title-eliminator, in what would have been his first UFC bout since the completion of his two-year retroactive USADA suspension after he tested positive for the banned substance, erythropoietin (EPO).
News of Dillashaw’s injury was first reported by Carlos Contreras Legaspi. Per his report, the promotion are attempting to find a new headliner for the May 8th. event, with plans to rescheduled Sandhagen and Dillashaw in the future.
Completing his USADA suspension at the beginning of this year, Dillashaw relinquished the bantamweight title following a first round knockout loss to then flyweight best, Henry Cejudo — after he was informed by the anti-doping agency of some “adverse findings” in a test sample he provided. Testing positive for EPO, the Angels Camp native was slapped with a two-year retroactive sidelining.
As for streaking bantamweight standout, Sandhagen, he put a shocking opening round rear-naked choke loss to current division titleholder, Aljamain Sterling at UFC 250 last June behind him, scoring a stunning wheel kick win over Marlon Moraes on ‘Fight Island’ in October.
Taking co-main event honours at UFC Vegas 18 in February, Sandhagen launched a spectacular, highlight-reel, flying knee knockout win over former lightweight pacesetter, Frankie Edgar inside the opening thirty seconds of the first frame.
Prior to his loss to Cejudo in his bid to become a two-weight champion held simultaneously, Dillashaw had rematched former Team Alpha MMA teammate and former titleholder, Cody Garbrandt at UFC 227 in in August of 2018 — notching a second career knockout win over his rival.
As of writing, a new main event for the May 8th, Fight Night card has yet to be determined by the promotion.
Providing a statement on his official Instagram as well as an image of a rather nasty laceration on his right eye lid, Dillashaw confirmed his removal from the event.
“I’m sad to say I have to be pulled from my fight on May 8th. due to a cut received from a head butt while drilling,” Dillashaw wrote. “Rescheduling the fight as soon as possible.“