Urijah Faber’s New Opponent at UFC 148 is…

May 18, 2012
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An injury that forced Dominick Cruz out of UFC 148 has opened the door for a new contender to step in and face Urijah Faber for an interim title on July 7.

The UFC has decided to make a call to Renan Barão to be Faber’s opponent. Barão is fresh off of a decision victory over perennial contender Scott Jorgensen at UFC 143.

The UFC made the announcement during Friday’s episode of The Ultimate Fighter Live.

The Brazilian fighter is 28-1, having only lost in the very first bout of his professional career. He has reeled off five consecutive victories under Zuffa’s employment in the WEC and UFC combined.

Barão was originally slated to face Ivan Menjivar at UFC 148, but will now get the bump up to face Faber for the interim title instead.

No new opponent has been announced yet for Menjivar, but it would seem a likely fit for Michael McDonald to step in to fill the void, as Barão, Menjivar, and McDonald were the three leading candidates to face Faber.

Faber vs. Barão will be a five-round fight to determine a new interim bantamweight champion, while Dominick Cruz undergoes and recovers from knee surgery to repair a torn ACL.

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  • This was a no brainer. Barão’s record speaks for itself and will be an easy marketing / promotion angle for Zuffa.

    Should be a good one. I like Faber by decision.

  • Mike_Oxafloppin

    Nothing against Faber but I don’t see how he wins this fight. People talk about Anderson, Jones, & Aldo, Barao IMO is going to be another top guy who looks unstoppable. Barao needs to blitz Urijah just like he did Brad Pickett, which is what I believe is exactly what’s going to happen.

  • D-rail

    Barao all the way.

  • adam1848

    Seems like nobody saw this fight coming!!

    I think its a good test for both fighters. Barao’s record speaks for itself, but he’s never faced a fighter of Faber’s caliber either. Good fight.

  • Renan Barao vs Dominick Cruz is going to be a great fight.

  • Santz

    Man, I forgot about Barao as a title contender. He’s gonna overwhelm the hell out of Faber and run right through him the way Aldo did. This guy’s like another Anderson Silva / Jose Aldo type fighter!

  • RubeKegal

    Yeah I got Barao in a tough fight.