It looks like the increasingly successful Nova Uniao camp in Brazil may have a pair of double-division UFC champions on the horizon based on some statements from bantamweight Renan Barao. The supremely skilled 135er, who holds a career mark of 29-1 and hasn’t lost since his professional debut, recently revealed he may follow teammate Jose Aldo’s lead and bulk up for a new divisional run at some point in the future.
“I feel very good in this weight division, but I feel in two or three years, if Aldo decides to move up a weight division, I might do that, too,” explained Barao in a conversation with MMAJunkie.
The 22-1 Aldo currently holds the featherweight title but has been linked to an eventual swim in the UFC’s lightweight pool for awhile based on his size. Interestingly enough, it turns out Barao said he’s actually the bigger of the two but has been staying at 135 pounds out of respect for his coaches’ wishes.
“I’m naturally the same weight as Aldo, but I cut more to make weight. I think I would suffer a lot less. I sacrifice a lot by cutting. I’d be able to eat a little better and relax a little more,” confessed Barao on the possibility of fighting at featherweight.
Barao is scheduled to defend his interim belt next weekend at UFC on Fuel 7 where he’ll face surging youngster Michael MacDonald. Linear champion Dominick Cruz has been out since October 2011 after tearing his ACL and reinjuring the ligament during rehab.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC/TATAME