Renan Barao at UFC 138With UFC bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz on the shelf for several more months, interim champ Renan Barao will next defend his belt against Michael McDonald in early 2013.

Cruz’s injury rehabilitation was expected to get him back in action in the first part of next year, but a setback put him on the surgeon’s table once again, further delaying his return.

In his absence, the UFC already crowned an interim champion in Renan Barao, and now the 135-pound titleholder will defend his belt.

UFC president Dana White confirmed the news via UFC Tonight on Fuel TV on Tuesday evening.

No date has been announced by the promotion, but sources have indicated when speaking to that a Barao vs. McDonald fight would likely take place in the first few months of 2013.

McDonald has already been out since April of this year when he knocked out former WEC champion Miguel Torres. Following that fight, McDonald had surgery on his hand, but is now back in full training mode and preparing for a fight.

McDonald told MMAWeekly Radio just days ago that he could be ready as early as the end of January, and with Barao sitting out since July, it’s likely the pairing will be made sooner rather than later.

Stay tuned to for all the latest UFC news and fight updates.

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

Barao looking to use home advantage Saturday

  • 28 days ago

Renan Barao will fight Phillipe Nover in Brazil on Saturday, where he has not lost since 2005. The two will meet in the co-main event of Fight Night Brasilia on FS1. read news >>

Renan Barao Hungry Again Heading into UFC Brasilia |

  • 26 days ago

Longtime bantamweight king Renan Barao moved up to 145 pounds because the weight cut was affecting his performance at bantamweight. read news >>

Renan Barao vs. Phillipe Nover: The Joe Rogan Preview |

  • 26 days ago

Joe Rogan breaks down the co-main event between Renan Barao and Phillipe Nover at UFC Fight Night Brasilia. read news >>

Finally freed of the scale, UFC Fight Night 95 co-headliner Renan Barao is not 'scared' of 145-pounders

  • 25 days ago

BRASILIA, Brazil – Since moving up from the bantamweight division, former UFC champ Renan Barao might be walking around heavier – but, as far as his spirits go, he certainly feels lighter.Filed under read news >>

UFC Fight Night 95 results: Renan Barao back in win column with decision over Phillipe Nover

  • 25 days ago

BRASILIA, Brazil – Renan Barao outstruck and outwrestled Phillipe Nover over the course of three rounds, and the result was a predictable one when the fight went to the scorecards. Filed under: Featu read news >>

Renan Barao Decisions Phillipe Nover at UFC Brasilia |

  • 25 days ago

Former bantamweight champ Renan Barao snapped a two-fight losing streak on Saturday, defeating Phillipe Nover in the UFC Fight Night Brasilia co-main event . read news >>

UFC Fight Night 95: Renan Barao vs. Phillipe Nover video highlights

  • 25 days ago

After the first two-fight losing skid of his career, Renan Barao is back in the win column. The former bantamweight champ picked up a much-needed win over Phillipe Nover.Filed under: News, UFC, Video read news >>

Renan Barao discusses how he beat Phillipe Nover | UFC Fight Night Brasilia

  • 25 days ago

Renan Barao spoke after his win over Phillipe Nover. read news >>

Renan Barao vs. Phillipe Nover | UFC Fight Night Highlights

  • 25 days ago

Watch highlights of Renan Barao's unanimous decision win over Phillipe Nover at UFC Fight Night in Brasilia, Brazil. read news >>

Renan Barao vs. Phillipe Nover… (UFC Brasilia Fight Highlight) |

  • 25 days ago

Check out the Renan Barao vs. Phillipe Nover UFC Brasilia fight highlights from Saturday's event in Brazil. read news >>