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UFC 148: Urijah Faber vs Renan Barao fight announced for July 7 in Las Vegas

Urijah Faber (left) squares off with Renan Barao at the Ultimate Fighter gym in Las Vegas.
Urijah Faber (left) squares off with Renan Barao at the Ultimate Fighter gym in Las Vegas.

Renan just a minute here, folks.

The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 15 episode 11 went down tonight and with that came UFC President Dana White's announcement of what bantamweight would replace injured champion Dominick Cruz in an interim title bout at UFC 148 on July 7, 2012, in Las Vegas, Nevada, against Urijah Faber.

And standing behind poorly constructed TUF gym door number three was Renan Barao.

On the surface, it doesn't look like a fight that will sell all too well, considering Barao's name doesn't carry a whole hell of a lot of weight stateside. But upon a deeper glance, he makes more sense than anyone else out there.

One could argue Michael McDonald deserved the shot and that may be so. But he's dealing with an injury at present time and once he was declared out, the choice seemed obvious.

Barao, a 25-year-old Brazilian, has just three fights inside the Octagon. He's notched impressive wins over Cole Escovedo, Brad Pickett and Scott Jorgensen, respectively. That run, by itself, is impressive enough.

But that's not even factoring in that this man has 30 professional fights and has lost only one of them, his debut back in April 2005. His win streak of 18 is as such thanks to a no contest back in 2007.

Either way, there's no denying Barao is supremely talented and has all the credentials to fight for a title in the world's largest fight promotion. Maybe not the legit bantamweight championship but an interim title will do.

For now.

UFC 148 will be headlined by a middleweight championship rematch pitting "The Spider," Anderson Silva, against his arch nemesis, Chael Sonnen. Faber vs. Barao will serve as the co-main event of the evening.

For all the latest and greatest news and notes on UFC 148 click here.

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