Former UFC bantamweight champion TJ Dillashaw is looking absolutely jacked ahead of his return in the Ultimate Fighting Championship cage.
Dillashaw, 34, was slapped with a two-year suspension in June 2019 after testing positive to banned substance, Erythropoietin.
According to reports, Dillashaw used the performance enhancing drug ahead of his flyweight title fight against Henry Cejudo, which he lost via 33-second knockout.
It was his biggest career setback to date as the UFC would later strip him of his 135-pound championship. He, then, admitted he intentionally took the banned substance.
“No excuses. I made the mistake of wanting to do something that hadn’t been done. I sold my soul to the devil and now I got to build myself back up and deal with it,” he told Ariel Helwani.
“I made a mistake and what I have been taught is that you handle it straight on instead of continuing to hide from it or run from it and now I am moving past it.”
Last month, ‘The Viper’ spoke to MMA Junkie and shared his plans for his Octagon return, with the UFC potentially granting him an immediate shot at the bantamweight title.
“I was told I would get that title fight when I came back, but that doesn’t mean anything,” Dillashaw claimed.
“I made a mistake – I don’t own rights to anything. But if it was my choice, it would be title fight, if not top-five to prove I should get that title fight.”
“I think that makes sense.”
“I’m hoping they just throw me to the dogs.”
“If I can’t get that title fight, I want someone in the top five so that I can get my title fight. I’m not here to play around. I want my belt back. It’s still mine. I’ll be ready.”
Dillashaw said his world turned upside down following the doping scandal but he used his time off to focus on improving his life.
“At first it was super tough. Then I went through two shoulder surgeries back-to-back, so that kind of added to it,” he shared.
“Down in the dumps. On the top of the world, then down as far to the bottom as you can get. It was tough. I’m not going to lie. I would be lying if I said it wasn’t.”
“At first it was real, real tough. But I’ve always been mentally strong.”
“I work my ass off and this has actually been – I wouldn’t choose to do this – but one of the best breaks I’ve had ever. I’ve got to focus on other parts of my life.”
On Wednesday, the former bantamweight champ flaunted an impressive body transformation as he continues to work his way back to title-contention.
Check out the photo below:
(Featured Image Source: Instagram/ TJ Dillashaw)