UFC heavyweight contender Travis Browne made short work of Josh Barnett at UFC 168, and his next fight will be a main event showdown with Fabricio Werdum. While the fight hasn't been officially announced, Werdum spoke with MMA Fighting about the fight, and he expects it to take place in March:
"I had a meeting with Dana White and Lorenzo Fertitta and told them I wanted to wait, but then I thought about it and saw that I would need to wait too much before my next fight," Werdum told MMAFighting.com. "You don’t remember what you don’t see.""We don’t have a date 100 percent confirmed yet, but I believe it's going to be in March," he continued. "I already know that it’s going to be a main event, so it's a five-round fight. He doesn’t have a good cardio, so that’s good for me. He's explosive when the fight starts, tries to finish it quickly, with jumping stuff and knockouts, so I see a lot of openings to defeat him."
Werdum (17-5-1) has won 6 of his last 7 fights, and is 3-0 in his UFC return. His current win streak consists of Roy Nelson, hammerfist extraordinaire Mike Russow, and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. Obviously the high point of his career is his armbar win against Fedor Emelianenko in 2010 in Strikeforce.
Browne (16-1-1) has also won 6 of his last 7, and his last 3 wins have all featured violent finishes against the likes of Gabriel Gonzaga, Alistair Overeem, and Josh Barnett. He won "Knockout of the Night" honors in all of those performances and is ranked #3 in the UFC's heavyweight rankings behind 2nd ranked Werdum.
It is assumed that the winner of this bout will fight Cain Velasquez towards the end of the year. Velasquez is currently recovering from shoulder surgery, which put Werdum in the predicament of either waiting for Cain to recover or taking a fight against the Browne/Barnett winner. It's a massive opportunity for both men, and it should be a great scrap.