In a Heavyweight contest at UFC 135: Jones vs. Rampage, Travis Browne (11-0-1; 2-0-1 UFC) will face Rob Broughton (15-5-1; 1-0 UFC). This is the 3rd bout on the PPV portion of the card. The USA TODAY / MMA Nation Consensus MMA Rankings list Browne at #16 in the Heavyweight division, with Broughton unranked.
This fight seems to be a gimme for Browne, and one that is a bit surprising to see so high on the card. A lot of people think highly of Browne's potential despite his relatively low level of UFC experience. This will be his chance to once again impress. Meanwhile, Broughton will look to play spoiler and steal that momentum away. Chances are, this one is ending in a KO. I'm guessing the UFC hopes it's Browne standing tall at the end.
How do these two stack up?
Browne: 30 years old | 6'7" | 78" reach
Broughton: 28 years old | 6'3" | 74" reach
What have these two done recently?
How did these two get here?
Browne comes in off a steadily building hype that belies his 2-0-1 UFC record. His 2nd UFC fight was a big step up as he faced long-time UFC heavyweight Cheick Kongo, with Browne earning an unsatisfying draw due to Kongo losing a point for grabbing the shorts. Browne followed that up with a big KO win over Stefan Struve that led Dana White to sing the young fighter's praises. The Greg Jackson trainee will try to live up to those accolades here. If he does win, and win big, look for him to be fast-tracked to a high profile Heavyweight fight the next time out.
Broughton is a veteran of the British MMA scene and the former Cage Rage champion. He's faced a who's who of the British Heavyweight scene, including James Thompson, Neil Wain, and Robert Berry, along with Ricco Rodriguez and Butterbean. He trains at Wolfslair (also home to Browne's former foe Kongo as well as main eventer Rampage Jackson), and is currently on a 5 fight win streak that includes a successful UFC debut over Vinicius Queiroz at UFC 120. He has not fought in nearly a year, and this will only be his 5th fight outside of England in his career.
Why should you care?
Browne is moving up the ranks, and chances are good you're going to be hearing a lot about him, so it's best to start paying close attention if you haven't already. If he is upset here, you'll see a surprise underdog win, which is fun too. And don't forget, that Browne KO of Struve was awesome.