Former number one UFC light heavyweight contender Renato "Babalu" Sobral (27-7) was arrested early Saturday morning for spitting on a bouncer at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Tampa, Fla., according to Dave Meltzer at WrestlingObserver.com.
Details are sketchy at this point, but here's what we know right now:
"Renato Sobral de Cunha was arrested at 4:15 a.m. and released yesterday on charges of Battery and Trespassing in Tampa. He was at the WFC event at the Florida State Fairgrounds, and was arrested at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Tampa. We don't have any other details except it is believed he spit on a bouncer."
Babalu is riding a two-fight losing streak (Liddell, Lambert) after going on a 10-fight, nearly three-year unbeaten tear to earn a rematch with then UFC 205-pound champion Chuck Liddell at UFC 62 in August 2006.
The Brazilian grappler was quickly dispatched by the "Iceman" in round one -- just like their first encounter (sans the head kick) at UFC 40.
Looking to get back on track, Babalu returned to the Octagon at UFC 68 in March 2007 against Jason Lambert. Unfortunately for Sobral, "The Punisher" ended his night early once again courtesy of a devastating second round punch.
Babalu is slated to compete against David Heath at UFC 74: "Respect" a little more than a month away on August 25.
It's puzzling that a top fighter would be involved in such a situation so close to fight time. When more details emerge perhaps this will make a little more sense.
For the official arrest report and mug shot click here.