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Dana White: Renan Barao 'should probably move up' to featherweight

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Esther Lin, Sportsfile

Now having lost his belt to T.J. Dillashaw and the rematch, the only chance former bantamweight champion Renan Barao has of getting a title shot again is another weight class.

And UFC president Dana White thinks it's time for the 28-year-old Brazilian to get a change of scenery.

White said in the UFC on FOX 16 post-fight conference that he thinks Barao should explore the idea of moving up to featherweight, particularly since he has had so much trouble cutting weight over the years.

"Yeah, it's obviously his decision but I think it would be a good idea to go up in weight," White told the media. "You know, he's been having problems with the weight. He didn't have problems yesterday -- he made the weight easy -- but he looks really drawn out and dry when he cuts weight. So he should probably move up."

Barao was forced out of the original rematch with Dillashaw at UFC 177 after a disastrous weight cut led to him passing out and hitting his head. Though he did make weight for Saturday's fight, he visibly appeared to gas early in the fight, showing signs of fatigue even in the first round.

Asked if the weight cut might have affected his performance, White said it's tricky to put a finger on what went wrong in circumstances like his.

"I don't know, it's weird because there are situations where, when a guy loses a certain fight in a certain way, he's never the same," he said. "It happened to Meldrick Taylor and a million other guys in boxing. And it almost looks like it happened to Renan"

Dillashaw retained the bantamweight title by stopping Barao in the fourth-round via TKO (strikes). Barao is now 33-3-(1), with his only two losses in the last ten years coming against Dillashaw.