The top two-ranked Bantamweight fighters in the world not named Renan Barao -- Urijah Faber (No.2) and Michael McDonald (No.3) -- will collide in the co-main event of UFC on FOX 9, which is now set for Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento, Calif., on Dec. 14, 2013.
Faber is on a patented non-championship winning roll, piling up three straight decisive victories over Ivan Menjivar (submission), Scott Jorgensen (submission) and Iuri Alcantara (decision) since losing out to the aforementioned Barao on the judges scorecards at UFC 149 in July 2012.
"California Kid" has been unsuccessful in his five most recent world title bouts, dating back to his reign as World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC) Featherweight champion that ended in Nov. 2008. Meanwhile, Faber has been victorious in every other appearance (8-0), a statistic "Mayday" more than likely knows all too well.
McDonald recently rebounded from his first-ever loss inside the Octagon to Barao at UFC on Fuel TV 7 earlier this year, scoring a "Fight of the Night"-winning submission over Brad Pickett at UFC Fight Night 26 after bombing the resilient Brit for the better part of two rounds.
At just 22 years young, McDonald has seemingly overperformed since making his promotional debut more than two years ago, winning five mixed martial arts (MMA) matches in six appearances in impressive fashion. He'll need to bring the heat and leverage his youth to topple the crafty and dynamic veteran, who is 12 years his senior.
It's a great match up with No. 1 contender implications undoubtedly on the line, with the winner likely earning a rematch against Barao or a showdown with Eddie Wineland, a title fight that will likely be the last with the "interim" tag.
UFC on FOX 9 will most likely feature a Lightweight title fight between division champion Anthony Pettis against T.J. Grant in the main event of the evening. No other bouts for the California card are known at this time.
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