Ronaldo Souza’s light heavyweight debut was a bit of a bust, but that doesn’t mean he’s completely done with the weight class.
In an interview with MMA Fighting, Souza’s longtime coach Josuel Distak explained that “Jacare” is returning to the middleweight division to continue his quest for a UFC title.
“‘Jacare’ will continue fighting in both divisions,” Distak said. “He will do special fights at 205, and go after the belt at 185. We still dream about fighting for the Ultimate Fighting belt. ‘Jacare’ still has that dream, and it’s hard to stop someone that has a dream. That’s our goal, to fight in both divisions. Wherever the exciting fights are, that’s where we’re going.”
Souza is coming off a lackluster split decision defeat to Jan Blachowicz this past November, which followed a unanimous decision loss at middleweight to Jack Hermansson. The 40-year-old is just 2-3 in his last five fights, although his two wins were spectacular KOs of Chris Weidman and Derek Brunson.
Up next for the outstanding grappler is a showdown with Uriah Hall at UFC 249 on April 18th, and Distak sees that as a difficult but great matchup for his fighter.
“This is a great fight for ‘Jacare,’” Distak said. “He’s very tough, but ‘Jacare’ never had an easy fight in the UFC. ‘Jacare’ is always fighting the toughest ones. It’s an important fight. Let’s kick things off in 2020 on the right foot.”
Hall is seeking a third straight victory and one of the biggest of his career, so this has the makings of a crossroads fight, and if Jacare is unable to come away with a win later this spring, his fading dreams of becoming UFC champion may be dashed for good.