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T.J. Dillashaw shrugs off Conor McGregor's 'snake in the grass' diss

UFC bantamweight champion T.J. Dillashaw says McGregor's claim that he is a traitor to Team Alpha Male is nothing more than an attempt to get under Urijah Faber's skin.

Things escalated between TUF (The Ultimate Fighter) coaches Urijah Faber and Conor McGregor on a recent episode of "UFC Tonight." The two featherweights traded verbal barbs in front of hosts Kenny Florian and Brian Stann, and 'The Notorious' upped the ante when he claimed that Urijah Faber's teammate T.J. Dillashaw was a "snake in the grass."

"He is a twerp. You shouldn't let him into your shit, because he is a snake in the grass and I told you that to your face!" Conor told Urijah. "You brought him into TUF, thinking he would help you. He was there to help him! He's a snake in the [expletive] grass and you need to figure that out and stop being a [expletive]."

McGregor's comments stem from the controversy surrounding Duane Ludwig and Team Alpha Male. Ludwig, a former UFC welterweight contender, retired in 2012 and embarked on a coaching career.

'Bang' served as the head coach at TAM for two years before parting ways with the team to set up his own gym: BANG Muay Thai. The 37-year-old continued to coach T.J. Dillashaw, helping to mould the former TUF finalist into the bantamweight champion he is today.

Tensions escalated between Ludwig and the rest of the Alpha Male squad when the former kickboxer claimed Dillashaw was the only fighter in the camp who truly wanted to be champion.

The Colorado-based coach later apologized for his comments but it's understood that things are still tense between the two camps.

When T.J. Dillashaw spoke to Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour, the 135 lbs. champ shrugged off McGregor's snake in the grass comments and said the Irishman was just trying to get a rise out of 'The California Kid.'

"He's been trying to get under Urijah's skin and get him going," Dillashaw said. "Conor sees that Urijah and Duane don't get along, and the fact is that, he's trying to call me a traitor, he's trying to say I'm training with the enemy, and that a true fight for Urijah would be me, when really that's not the case."

"I'm spending half my time with the team, I went and helped on The Ultimate Fighter, I run more of the practices at Team Alpha Male than Urijah does, I put my time in there with the team," Dillashaw said. "For [McGregor] to talk about something that he has no idea, it's so ridiculous, but you can tell he wants to get under Urijah's skin, so he needs to do it."

After witnessing Chad Mendes' brief success against McGregor on two weeks' notice at UFC 189, Dillashaw also feels he'd be able to beat McGregor in the Octagon but claims the Dubliner would never accept the fight.

"I don't think he wants that," Dillashaw said. "I think he just wants to get under Urjiah's skin. If it was ever a possibility to work its way out I would love to do it, because I really believe that I can beat Conor McGregor, especially after watching Chad fight him. Chad on a full camp beats that guy, easily in my mind."

T.J. Dillashaw is set to defend his bantamweight title in a super-fight against former champion Dominick Cruz at a future UFC event in Boston.