Renen Barao to Defend Bantamweight Title Against T.J. Dillashaw at UFC 173

March 28, 2014

Renan-Barao-UFC-138_011-478x270Renan Barao will defend his UFC bantamweight title against T.J. Dillashaw at UFC 173, according to multiple reports on Thursday evening.

The Barao-Dillashaw title fight will headline the May 24 card, which is scheduled to take place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

Barao (33-1, 1 NC) comes into the fight having not lost a professional fight since his debut in 2005. The Brazilian fighter earned the interim bantamweight belt with a win over Urijah Faber at UFC 149, while then-champion Dominick Cruz recovered from injury.

Cruz has continued to struggle with more injuries and has not been able to fight since October 2011. As a result of his extended absence from the Octagon, Barao was awarded with the undisputed title leading into this last fight, a second win over Faber at UFC 169 last February.

Dillashaw (9-2) was scheduled to meet Takeya Mizugaki on the UFC 173 card, but was shifted into the main event spot in the organization’s scramble to find a featured bout. It is unknown at this time if Mizugaki will remain on the card.

The May pay-per-view was originally supposed to be headlined by a middleweight title fight between 185-pound champ Chris Weidman and challenger Lyoto Machida, but Weidman sustained a knee injury and the fight was pushed back to July 5.

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