“My life has changed a lot, it was like a dream came true,” he tells Fighters Only. “Thanks to God I can say I live entirely from the money I make from MMA.
“I can help my family. I purchased a house for my mother, which was always a goal of mine. My life really changed when I won the title. I am able to divide my career between ‘before and after’ the championship.”
From the victory against ‘The California Kid’, Renan has good memories.
“I was doing so well and was very well prepared. He’s a great athlete, a tough guy, but I had already studied him so much along with my coaches. I knew he had strong strikes and I trained to neutralize them. Everything worked out and today I am telling this history as champion.”
As interim champion, Barao has defended the belt once. He would have fought Michael McDonald last month if it wasn’t for an injury that forced him to leave the card. Their fight has been rescheduled for Sep 21 and the Nova Uniao star is gunning for a return to the Octagon.
“I wish to come back to fight badly. That’s what I want the most. My goal is to keep fighting and winning bouts, so as to keep growing with the organization.”