During Cruz’s absence, the UFC crowned an interim bantamweight champion by the name of Renan Barao (30-1 MMA, 5-0 UFC).
Cruz recently travelled to Brazil to attend UFC 163 this past Saturday, where he crossed paths with the 135-pound interim champ.
According to Barao, who spoke briefly with Cruz, “The Dominator” will be fighting again in February of 2014:
“We only exchanged a few words because my English isn’t that good,” Renan told MMAFighting.com. “He told me he’s returning on February. I was really happy to hear that. I hope he can return so we can finally fight.”
Barao is set to defend his interim bantamweight title against former WEC champ Eddie Wineland (20-8-1 MMA, 2-2 UFC) at next month’s UFC 165 event in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.