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Former UFC Champ Barao Plans to Return as Featherweight

Photo Courtesy of AP

A fighter can only take so many one-sided beatings at the hands of the dominant champion before considering a change in weight class.

Even more true for former UFC bantamweight champion Renan Barao, who’s notoriously had a difficult time at making 135 pounds during his time fighting inside the Octagon.

Shortly after his loss to the division’s current reigning champion T.J. Dillashaw, both fans and analysts felt it was time for Barao to make the move up in weight. Two months after his fourth-round TKO loss, Barao seems to agree.

“The expectation is for us to move up, yes — to do some fights [in the featherweight] division and see what will happen,” Barao said while on Brazil’s RN TV (per MMAFighting) . “We’ll see how that goes.”

But the jump in weight class won’t come without some potential complications for the top-ranked bantamweight contender. Pound-for-pound king and Nova Uniao training partner Jose Aldo holds the belt in what will become Barao’s new home.

“We didn’t even think about this possibility [of fighting Aldo],” Barao said. “The goal is to keep fighting, putting on great fights, and then think about the possibility of fighting for the belt.”

The former champ didn’t reveal on when he’d like to make his return to the cage.

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