Finally, after two more fights have fallen through, Renan Barao and bantamweight champ TJ Dillashaw will throw down for a second time at UFC on FOX 16 this Saturday (knock on wood). Not only is it a massive fight because the title’s on the line, but because it will determine whether we’ve entered a new era at 135 or not…
Unless you jumped on board the MMA train just recently, then you know that until last May, Barao was on one of the most memorable runs in the sport’s history. Heading into his first fight with Dillashaw, the Brazilian was on a 32 fight winning streak and had taken out many of the UFC’s top 135érs. That all changed at UFC 173, however, as Dillashaw took Barao out in round five to become the new champ.
They were supposed to rematch that August, but after a disastrous weight cut, Barao was pulled from the event. Dillashaw KO’d Joe Soto instead, and another fight with Barao was booked for this past April. Unfortunately, Dillashaw went down with a rib injury, and now, a few months later, they’re set to throw down in Chicago this Saturday.
If Dillashaw wins, then the Barao era will definitely be over. If the latter wins, however, then things could get really interesting…Rubber match?
In advance of the July 25th card the UFC has released a new “Road to the Octagon“, which you can watch below. The show also dives into the co-headliner between bantamweights Miesha Tate and Jessica Eye, and the lightweight fight between Paul Felder and Edson Barboza.
UFC on FOX 16 will be hosted by Chicago’s United Center.