Sterling and Dillashaw are set to clash for “The Funk Master’s” strap during the UFC 280 co-main event on October 22 in Abu Dhabi, UAE.
Dillashaw returned to action in July 2021 after serving a two-year suspension for testing positive for Erythropoietin (EPO). It was a successful return for Dillashaw as he bested top-ranked contender Cory Sandhagen via unanimous decision in a thrilling five-round affair.
During the bout, Dillashaw suffered a knee injury. He underwent surgery, which sidelined him for months.
And once the former bantamweight champion recovered, the UFC decided to slot him in for Sterling’s second title defense.
Sterling Thinks Dillashaw Is Using PED’s, Has ‘Made Peace With It’
Ahead of their championship battle, Sterling was interviewed by Submission Radio. And during it, The Funk Master shared his take that Dillashaw is still using banned substances. And according to Sterling, he’s “made peace” with the idea of it ahead of UFC 280.
“If I had to make a prediction, I would say there’s definitely no doubt in my mind that that guy’s finding some type of doctor or little micro-dosing or whatever, however that s*** works,” Sterling said (h/t MMA Junkie). “I guarantee you he’s finding some type of way to get an edge once again, as he’s done his entire UFC career. So I already made peace with it. So, at the end of the day, it is what it is.
“Like, I made the acknowledgment that I’m gonna step into there with this guy knowing that there’s a high chance of this happening. And it is what it is, man. I feel like this is not gonna be the first guy I fought that’s been on some (supplements), some extra supps. So, I think my hard work and skill set is enough to get the job done before, and I think it can get the job done again.”
‘Someone’s Gonna Look Very, Very Stupid,’ Sterling Promised
Sterling continued with his thoughts on Dillashaw, comparing his UFC 280 opponent to his previous, Petr Yan.
“At the end of the day, his usage of PEDs won’t make his fight IQ better,” The Funk Master said. “And I don’t think he’s fought anyone with my type of style. He could say whatever he wants in terms of it’s an easy fight, ‘Striking is embarrassing,’ all this stuff he’s saying. Like I said, the trash talk, someone’s got to eat their words, and someone’s gonna look very, very stupid.
“And I just really don’t think it’s gonna be me. The same thing with Petr Yan calling me a chicken, I’m a coward and all this stuff. And I’m like, ‘Dude, I didn’t get here by accident.’ So, if you think all this stuff that you want to say, uh, I mean, there’s one way we’re gonna find out is gonna be in a couple of weeks. So again, I just make peace with it.”
Sterling didn’t go without sharing some praise for Dillashaw, calling him “one of the greatest of all time in the bantamweight division.”