COMMENTARY | After suffering his first loss as a professional MMA fighter at the hands of Antonio "Bigfoot" Silva at UFC on FX 5, Travis "Hapa" Browne bounced right back with a first-round knockout victory against Gabriel Gonzaga.
With his win against Gonzaga, Browne (14-1-1, 10 KOs) re-established himself as a force to be reckoned with in the Ultimate Fighting Championship's heavyweight division, and he'll have an opportunity to propel himself into the title conversation when he takes on his next challenge, Alistair Overeem (36-12-0, 19 submissions), at UFC on Fox Sports 1.
"He's definitely a veteran," Browne said during a conversation with MMAJunkie.com. "He's been around a long time, and all the controversial stuff aside, he's a dangerous man. At this level, we all are."
UFC on Fox Sports 1 is set for August 17, at the TD Garden in Boston, Mass. The event will also feature several other intriguing matchups like Chael Sonnen vs. Mauricio "Shogun" Rua, Urijah Faber vs. Yuri Alcantara, and Matt Brown vs. Thiago Alves.
Like Browne, Overeem's title aspirations were also derailed by Bigfoot. After losing the first two rounds of their UFC 156 encounter, the Brazilian pulled off the come-from-behind upset, catching Overeem off-guard with a head kick, followed by a vicious barrage of punches that prompted the stoppage.
The victory earned Silva a shot at the Ultimate Fighting Championship's heavyweight champion, Cain Velasquez, while Overeem dropped a few rungs down the division's ladder.
Fortunately for Overeem and Browne, a win at UFC on Fox Sports 1 will put the victor right back in the title conversation. Given how much a win would mean for either man, it's only rational to expect fireworks.
Browne has shown decent striking skills in the past, with a majority of his wins coming via knockout. However, he's never faced anyone with Overeem's world-class striking skills in the past. When focused, and not dropping his hands like he did against Silva, Overeem's striking is a thing of beauty.
"He definitely has a skill set that you need to be aware of and respect, and that's what we're going to do," Browne added. "We're going to go in there, we're going to set up the gameplan to beat him, and we're going to follow through on our gameplan."
The one glaring weakness Overeem has is his questionable chin, which has failed him multiple times in the past. It's a weakness Browne will undoubtedly try to exploit when the two square up.
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