The UFC is sending a pair of title fights to UFC 169 in Newark, New Jersey as UFC featherweight champion José Aldo will face Ricardo Lamas and UFC bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz will face UFC interim bantamweight champion Renan Barão. The UFC announced the pairings earlier this afternoon.
The Aldo and Lamas pairing will headline the UFC’s Super Bowl weekend fight card. Aldo heads into the bout after winning his last 16 fights, including seven straight title defenses dating back to his WEC title days. Ricardo Lamas comes into the title bout having won his last four fights, with his last victory coming over Erik Koch at UFC on FOX 6.
In the night’s co-headliner, UFC bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz will defend his title for the first time in over two years when he vies to unify the bantamweight crown against UFC interim bantamweight champion Renan Barão. Cruz last defended his title against UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson in 2011 and then suffered a knee injury during The Ultimate Fighter Live that has kept him out of contention since.
Meanwhile, interim champion Renan Barão has run roughshod over the bantamweight division in Cruz’s absence. Barão, who rides a 31-fight unbeaten streak, has won all six of UFC appearances and has defended the bantamweight crown twice since winning the title at UFC 149.
UFC 169 will take place at the Prudential Center on February 1 in Newark, New Jersey. The title fights will join a heavyweight pairing between Frank Mir and Alistair Overeem on the pay-per-view lineup.