The animosity between Team Alpha Male’s Cody Garbrandt and former teammate TJ Dillashaw has been on full display during this season of The Ultimate Fighter. The opposing coaches had a physical altercation in the first episode. In the sixth episode, the assistant coaches nearly came to blows.
Dillashaw left Team Alpha Male in late 2015 after defending the 135-pound world title twice to join former Team Alpha Male head coach Duane Ludwig’s team in Colorado. The members of Alpha Male consider Dillashaw a traitor, and Ludwig a manipulator.
Dillashaw lost to former champion Dominick Cruz in a razor-close split decision in Dillashaw’s first training camp under Ludwig. Alpha Male’s Garbrandt defeated Cruz to capture the belt at UFC 207 in December. The feud between the two parties has intensified on TUF 25: Redemption.
Ludwig is one of Team Dillashaw’s assistant coaches on the reality series. During the intense stare down between Ramsey Nijem and Julian Lane at the weigh-in, Ludwig and Team Garbrandt assistant coach Justin Buchholz exchanged words.
“What, you’ve got intro to kickboxing up there,” said Buchholz about Ludwig’s gym. “You took him from the team that got him where he needed to go.”
It wasn’t long before Garbrandt was verbally attacking Dillashaw and going after Ludwig. “Quit looking at me,” Garbrandt said to Ludwig. Ludwig quipped back, “I’ll look at you all I want (expletive).” After Ludwig’s replay, Garbrandt had to be restrained by team members.
“It was a lot of built up animosity towards Duane and what he did to the team with TJ. The issue at hand is them being sellouts, phonies and fakes,” explained Garbrandt.
“It started out with them two (Ludwig and Buchholz), but of course it instantly led to Cody acting like an idiot,” said Dillashaw.
“How about we fight on the prelims,” Buchholz suggested to Ludwig.
“Duane Ludwig, the guy has been trashing my team and my fighters since he stole TJ from the team and manipulated him to go to Colorado. He’s trying to take credit for stuff that we did, the champion we created in TJ and it’s (expletive). I’m tired of it,” said Buchholz.
“I don’t know how you can force a grown man to follow you across country,” said Ludwig about the situation with Team Alpha Male.
“What I’m seeing from them is the actions from someone in junior high, or high school. It doesn’t really make sense. I’ve moved on. I’m focused on my family and my business and they can’t seem to let it go. I’m not quite sure why they’re so obsessed about TJ and I,” added Ludwig.