With UFC 173 in the record books, and the shock result over the Bantamweight Championship match only now settling down, it allows us the chance to reflect on the new face of the division.
The events of last Saturday’s main event no doubt came to a surprise for most of us as T.J. Dillashaw outclassed and outperformed the Nova União stand out, Renan Barão – but what does Dillashaws’ win truly mean?
For Dillashaw this win means that he is now the real deal, and that he was indeed the right man for the main event. As the overwhelming underdog coming into this fight he has not only silenced the naysayers with his performance, but he has also put his name in the hierarchy of the UFC roster. After all he did beat a man who was undefeated for ten years and was considered to be a pound for pound great.
The win also provides confidence for the Team Alpha Male camp as they finally hail a UFC champion among their ranks after seven attempts of challenging for the prestigious UFC crown. The tears from Duane Ludwig’s face told the story as Urijah Faber, Joseph Benivdez and Chad Mendes all joined in to celebrate the triumph of the newly crowned champion. Perhaps Dillashaws success will help inspire Chad Mendes to overcome the Featherweight champion and Nova União juggernaut José Aldo in their rematch scheduled later this year.
The win also makes Dillashaw the fourth Ultimate Fighter alum to win the UFC championship. Joining in the ranks of Forrest Griffin, Rashad Evans and Matt Serra his win helps to add legitimacy to the reality show, which has been questionable in recent years in terms of talent and out of control and unbecoming coaching, sportsmanship and discipline.
Lastly, just as Matt Serra, BJ Penn and Chris Weidman all proved that you can’t sleep on an opponent and indeed the aura of invincibility does not exist in a fight, anything can happen and in this case it did. Dillashaw showed that on any given night anything can happen, and in this case it did it should not reflect on the talents and skills of a fighter.
Odds are nothing but facts and statistics and they don’t mean anything to the fighters once the cage door shuts.