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Renan Barao hopes T.J. Dillashaw keeps his UFC title ‘so I can beat him up and make him stop talking trash’

Wander Roberto, Inovafoto

Renan Barao is scheduled to meet Mitch Gagnon in the co-main event of UFC Fight Night 58 in Barueri, Brazil, on Dec. 20, and he believes it’s a matter of time until he faces T.J. Dillashaw one more time.

Barao, who lost his UFC bantamweight title to Dillashaw in May, was forced out of the rematch in August after passing out while cutting weight for UFC 177.

"He's scared, he don't want it," Dillashaw said hours after Barao news became public in August. "His coaches wanted the rematch more than he did."

"I never ran from anyone," Barao responded in an interview to "Unfortunately, everything happened the way it happened, but I hope he keeps that title until we meet each other, so I can beat him up and make him stop talking trash."

Barao has to get past Gagnon before targeting Dillashaw, and he’s not looking past the Canadian grappler.

"We’re working hard so I get there in the Octagon and put on my best performance," Barao said. "I haven’t changed anything. I try to train everything to be at the top of my game wherever the fight goes. I’m working hard on my wrestling, jiu-jitsu and striking.

"I saw that he’s a jiu-jitsu guy, has a lot of submissions," he continued. "I think he will try to grapple with me, but I’m a jiu-jitsu black belt and I train with the best in the world. If he wants to grapple with me, no problem at all."

The only thing Barao will change in his camp for UFC Fight Night 58 is his diet.

"I will control that better, work with a nutritionist," he said, "so I have no surprises like last time."

Still ranked at No. 1 in the bantamweight division, the Nova Uniao fighter isn’t bothered with the fact that he’s facing the No. 14 fighter in the UFC rankings.

"I’m cool with it. I don’t pay much attention to rankings," Barao said. "I will train for the No. 1 or No. 2 exactly like I train with the number 10. No problem. I will focus on doing my best and putting on a show for the fans.

"That’s my goal, fight for the title again," he continued. "But I don’t think about that now. I’m focused on my next fight. Gagnon is a tough guy, so I’m not looking past him. My goal is to win this fight now."

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