Commission ups Barao-Sterling weight limit to 140 lbs

Joe Camporeale / USA TODAY

Renan Barao's next battle with the scale just got a little easier.

The former UFC bantamweight champion was expected to return to the 135-pound division after a two-fight stint at featherweight, but his upcoming bout with Aljamain Sterling at UFC 214 in Anaheim will instead be contested at a catchweight of 140 pounds, according to Duane Finley of FloCombat, who spoke with California State Athletic Commission executive director Andy Foster.

Barao has never officially missed weight, but he reportedly struggled with the cut down to 135 and was removed from an August 2014 title fight with TJ Dillashaw after experiencing severe dehydration.

"Do you remember UFC 177, the one over here in Sacramento? The last time we had to regulate Mr. Barao at 135, it didn't turn out so good," Foster told Finley. "He didn't make it to the fight. Our doctors and our commission staff, we are certainly not against the fight (versus Sterling). We're happy with the fight. Just not at 135. Now, if Mr. Barao makes 140 no problem and everything's good, in the future if he wants to fight at 135, we can revisit that.

"But last time he was here, he didn't make the weight. I don't even know if that's an accurate statement. He didn't weigh in. That's probably a better statement. So we're going to 140, and I think that's a responsible course of action."

Sterling took to Instagram on Wednesday to take a jab at Barao's weight-cutting problems:

(Warning: Post contains coarse language)

Sterling recently snapped a two-fight losing streak with a unanimous decision win over Augusto Mendes and he'll look to improve his resume by taking out Barao, who was a UFC titleholder from 2012-14.

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Commission ups Barao-Sterling weight limit to 140 lbs
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