TJ Dillashaw Will Battle Renan Barao in UFC 173 Main Event

Published on March 31st, 2014 4:18 pm EST

When Chris Weidman was forced to pull out of a planned title defense against Lyoto Machida at UFC 173, the UFC was left scrambling for a new main event. After all, Junior dos Santos vs Stipe Miocic will be a fun fight, but it's not really a main event for one of the UFC’s biggest cards of the year.

Renan Barao agreed to defend his Bantamweight title at UFC 173 with the UFC originally having in mind Raphael Assuncao as an opponent. Unfortunately for Assuncao, he was unable to take the fight. Here is what he said:

"Due to a rib injury and not being released by doctors, I couldn’t take the opportunity to fight for the belt at UFC 173 on May 24th."

The UFC asked TJ Dillashaw if he wanted the shot, and Dillashaw quickly accepted.

Dillashaw was originally supposed to be facing Takeya Mizugaki on the card, but will now get the undisputed Bantamweight champion, who is widely considered to be one of the top pound-for-pound fighters in the world.

Renan Barao enters his fight against Dillashaw on a long, long winning streak that stretches all the way back to April of 2005.

TJ Dillashaw, on the other hand, is 5-1 in his last six fights, with his lone loss over that time coming against Raphael Assuncao.

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