Urijah Faber wanted to face Dominick Cruz for the UFC bantamweight title this past weekend at one of the biggest UFC events ever. Instead, Faber will settle for meeting Renan Barao for the interim title on July 21 in the main event of UFC 149: Faber vs. Barao.
Cruz was forced out of the planned fight due to a knee injury suffered in training. The two rivals were coaches on the first live season of The Ultimate Fighter, and were slated to take the co-main event slot at UFC 148: Silva vs. Sonnen II.
For Barao, this will be the ultimate challenge, as the 25-year-old has topped Scott Jorgensen, Brad Pickett and Cole Escovedo since joining the UFC. His last, and only loss, came back in his debut fight in 2005.
Faber is 26-5 and the former poster boy for the WEC. “The California Kid” lost to Cruz last year for the title, but submitted Brian Bowles to earn another shot before the injury knocked Cruz out.
Check out the video below for a preview for the Faber-Barao encounter from Calgary, Alberta, Canada: