Former Strikeforce middleweight champion Ronaldo Souza isn’t giving up on his ongoing pursuit of the promotion’s 185-pound strap, currently held hostage by injured division kingpin Michael Bisping.
But he’s got a lot of work to do if he wants to find his way back to the top.
That’s because “Jacare” has been turned away by Yoel Romero and Robert Whittaker, two of the world’s best middleweights, who collide at UFC 213 this Saturday night (July 8, 2017) inside T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
"I’m coming back and will earn my title shot,” Souza told MMA Fighting. “I think Romero wins this fight. He’s stronger, keeps the distance well and is really calm. Robert Whittaker can surprise him and win because he’s really fast for the middleweight division, but I bet on Romero.”
Romero vs. Whittaker is for the division’s interim strap.
Souza (24-5, 1 NC) is 10-2 with nine violent finishes since surrendering his title to Luke Rockhold back in late 2011. Currently ranked No. 5 at 185 pounds, the Brazilian will need a couple of big wins to get back in the mix.
Or perhaps a last-minute injury.