According to Mike Roberts, who manages UFC bantamweight champion T.J. Dillashaw, Renan Barao is likely to vault ahead of recently-injured contenders Dominick Cruz and Raphael Assuncao.
Barao earned a win over Mitch Gagnon earlier this month after being removed from a planned rematch with Dillashaw following an issue with his weight cut. The Brazilian dropped the title to the Team Alpha Male fighter earlier this year.
“We would assume we’re probably fighting Barao,” Roberts said, in an interview with MMAjunkie.com, “but ultimately the UFC is going to call and ask for something.”
Rumors of a Dillashaw-Urijah Faber bout have picked up since the injuries to Cruz and Assuncao, but the two are extremely close teammates in California.
Dillashaw (11-2) earned a title defense over Joe Soto after Soto replaced Barao, while Faber (32-7) has kept busy.