It's very rare that an interim title is defended in the Ultimate Fighting Championship. Usually when a fighter wins one, they wait for the divisions true champion to come back so they can unify it, no matter how long that wait may be. At the young age of 25, currently riding high on a 30-fight unbeaten streak, Renan Barao chose to continue working. And by working I mean cracking skulls and gettin' money.
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Barao was able to submit Michael McDonald after absorbing some big shots from the dangerous striker throughout the first three rounds. Barao said he wanted to take it to the ground to score the submission win, and like a true champion, he did exactly what he told us he was going to do. McDonald gave him a great fight, and it likely won't be the last time we see these two talented 'young guns' go toe-to-toe under the UFC banner. Now it's time for the young McDonald to go back and make some adjustments in his game after taking a round from Barao and going into deep waters for the first time in his career. For Barao, its time to reap the benefits of being a UFC champion, and now it's time to wait for Dominick Cruz to return.