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TJ Dillashaw tried to panic UFC bantamweight division, got shut down by ‘Funkmaster’ instead

Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) bantamweight champion TJ Dillashaw is just a few months away from becoming eligible to make his mixed martial arts (MMA) return, following a United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) drug-testing suspension that left him sidelined for two years.

“My return will be here soon and ready to reclaim what’s mine,” a confident Dillashaw wrote on Instagram, referring to the 135-pound title he was forced to surrender after testing positive for recombinant human erythropoietin (EPO) in the wake of his flyweight loss to Henry Cejudo at UFC Brooklyn on ESPN.

No. 2-ranked title contender Aljamain Sterling isn’t looking over his shoulder.

“Those tricks are old now man,” an unimpressed Sterling wrote on Twitter. “There’s new kids on the block and I’m not even just talking about me. Win 1-2 fights and then maybe he can have a shot at my throne.”

The 31 year-old Sterling (19-3), fresh off his first-round submission win over Cory Sandhagen at UFC 250 back in June, has now won five straight and seven of his last eight and is the leading candidate to battle current bantamweight champion Petr Yan at some point later this year.

A lot has changed since Dillashaw (15-4) wore the division strap. Yan went from No. 14 to world champion, Dominick Cruz fell out of the Top 10, Henry Cejudo retired, and former featherweights Jose Aldo and Frankie Edgar entered the chat.

Dillashaw, who will be 35 by the time he returns, will certainly have his work cut out for him.