Ex-UFC Champion TJ Dillashaw on Positive PED Test: 'I Sold My Soul to the Devil'

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistNovember 25, 2019

T.J. Dillashaw smiles after his win against Cody Garbrandt during their UFC title bantamweight mixed martial arts bout at UFC 227 in Los Angeles, Saturday, Aug. 4, 2018. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)
Chris Carlson/Associated Press

UFC star T.J. Dillashaw was upfront about his use of an illegal substance during Monday's interview on Ariel Helwani's MMA Show

"I made the mistake of wanting to do something that hadn't been done and I sold my soul to the devil," he said.

Dillashaw was already the bantamweight champion when he decided to drop down to the flyweight division, attempting to become the fourth person ever to hold two UFC division titles simultaneously. However, Henry Cejudo earned a first-round knockout to win a highly anticipated January fight. 

The bigger drama came in April when Dillashaw tested positive for recombinant human erythropoietin, leading to a two-year suspension

As he explained Monday, he took the drug as a result of the significant weight-cutting required to go from the 135-pound division down to 125.

The 33-year-old said he became anemic so he took something that helped rebuild red blood cells about three-to-four weeks before the fight. Though he considered dropping out of the bout, he kept his eyes on potentially making history.

"I let my bad judgement and pressure get the best of me," Dillashaw said.

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To his credit, the competitor was open about breaking the rules in a contrast to other athletes who might remain in denial or provide excuses. 

"I haven't hid from any of my decisions," he said. "I made a mistake and want to own up to it."

Dillashaw is hoping to once again contend for titles when he returns in 2021.

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