While no stranger to TUF, (Garbrandt famously went head to head with Conor McGregor as part of Urijah Faber during season 22) landing the role as coach is now testament to just how far the new bantamweight champion of the world has come; the Ohio native was relatively unknown, and unranked by the UFC on his TUF debut as a fighter, on Season 22 [Team McGregor vs. Team Faber].
“No Love” boasts a flawless record inside the octagon, having tore the bantamweight division with a series of impressive performances before taking the 135 pound title from the man [Dominick Cruz] who in turn beat the former champion TJ Dillashaw to take the crown. Dillashaw will no doubt see the opportunity to not only win back the belt he lost in 2015, but to further enhance his PR stock as about as attractive as it gets in the land of the UFC.
Dillashaw’s famous (and somewhat acrimonious) departure with former gym Team Alpha Male adds the spice necessary to justify expectations of the series being one of the best in recent memory. Both men will square off with the title on the line after coaching their respective teams on “The Ultimate Fighter”.
Duane Ludwing trained TJ Dillashaw has history on TUF: The California native fought on season 14, prior to losing to TUF champion John Dodson, and also acted as an assistant coach to Urijah Faber on season 22 where the famous McGregor insult to Dillashaw, (“snake in the grass”) was coined.
Both Cody Garbrandt and TJ Dillashaw have actively professed their disdain for each other in recent times, so what better way to sort things out than a team v team eliminator, culminating with with 5 healthy rounds inside the octagon? 2017 is beginning to take shape already.