(Video courtesy of Sherdog)
According to Renato "Babalu" Sobral, his upcoming 195-pound catchweight bout with Robbie Lawler on June 16 isn’t a one-off appearance for the former Strikeforce champion at a lighter weight as the Brazilian submission specialist is planning a further drop to compete as a middleweight in the foreseeable future.
Since his friend and training partner, Muhammed King Mo’ Lawal won the title Babalu previously held by defeating the man who took his belt, Gegard Mousasi in April, Sobral says that the fact that he would never fight anyone on his team necessitated the drop in weight.
Babalu, who dropped a decision to Fedor Emelianenko as heavyweight in 2001, told Sherdog’s Loretta Hunt that he hasn’t weighed 185 since high school and said it isn’t outside of the realm of possibility that we may see him jump back up one or two weight classes in the future.
The 34-year-old Gracie Barra BJJ black belt who was dropped by the UFC after failing to relinquish a choke on David Heath at UFC 74, has put together a solid 4-1 record outside of the Octagon with wins over Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou, Bobby Southworth and Mike Whitehead. He suffered his lone loss — a knockout against Mousasi last August and has not fought since, blaming the extended absence from the cage on Showtime.