On Friday afternoon about an hour before the UFC 177 weigh-ins, Renan Barao passed out while cutting weight and was forced to withdraw from his championship rematch against current bantamweight title holder, T.J. Dillashaw.
Brazil’s Combate first broke the news. Per their report, Barao was transported to the hospital and treated. He was released and returned to his hotel in Sacramento. However, the former UFC bantamweight champ will not be permitted to compete in the main event due to the incident.
Instead former Bellator featherweight champion and Tachi Palace Fights bantamweight champion, Joe Soto, will compete for the UFC bantamweight title in his debut with the promotion. The 27-year-old fights out of Santa Rosa, Ca, and owns a 6-fight win streak. In that streak, he has 5 stoppages.
He steps up to meet Dillashaw on 24 hours notice. Initially, Soto was slated to meet Anthony Birchak. The complete UFC 177 fight card now has a total of 8 bouts. Birchak unfortunately will not receive a new opponent.
Earlier today Scott Jorgensen’s opponent, Henry Cejudo withdrew from the card for undisclosed medical reasons. That bout was also scrapped.
The UFC released a statement to confirm that Barao will no longer compete on the card emanting from the Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento. UFC 177 will remain as a pay-per-view card.
Former UFC bantamweight champion and No. 1 contender Renan Barao has been removed from his UFC 177 rematch against current champion T. J. Dillashaw after Barao reported feeling ill during his weight cut.
Barao will be replaced on the card by bantamweight Joe Soto (15-2), the winner of six consecutive fights who was scheduled to fight on the undercard against Anthony Birchak.
The UFC 177 pay-per-view program will continue as scheduled, an an update regarding Birchak will be announced shortly. Check back at UFC.com for more information.