UFC 168’s Travis Browne will face a stern test as he goes up against Heavyweight ‘Warmaster’ Josh Barnett on the December 28th card. The Hawaiian slugger is riding a two fight KO streak, during which he elbowed Gabriel Gonzaga in to oblivion and head kicked Alistair Overeem in to irrelevance.
‘Hapa’ stopped by to chat with Bleacher Report regarding his upcoming scrap and more:
"I think I match up really well with him. I have my length to keep him on the outside, and if he does get on the inside, I have the ability to defend and get out or ability to get out and go on the offensive with my close game or ground game.”
“That's something a lot of people don't realize. I can be offensive too. He can try to push me up against the cage, but what is he going to do once he gets me there? I can implement that kind of game plan as well."
I am very interested to see how Browne deals with Barnett’s catch wrestling style and improved striking. I still think Browne has the nod on the feet, but Barnett is a big powerful guy that could easily put your lights out. His bread and butter wrestling is a challenge in itself, but it sound like TB is pretty hyped ahead of UFC 168:
"Alistair Overeem, Cheick Kongo, even Stefan Struve being as young as he is, all have more experience than I do. These guys I'm fighting all have three times as many fights as I do, but I live for that sh**. Just because I'm young in the sport doesn't mean you get to overlook me.” "If you had asked me about respect two years ago, I would have said I was so happy I'm finally getting it," Browne said. "But now I'm in the mindset where I don't give a sh** about that. I'm here to do one thing and that is to go after that belt.”
This is certainly the most colourful Travis Browne interview I’ve seen, but perhaps it is indicative of his mindset for this fight. He seems really fired up, and that could prove to be a bad thing for ‘The Warmaster’ come fight night.
"Until I have that belt, defended that belt and left a legacy with my name and what I've done in that cage, then I'll have time to relax and take in what I've done. Right now, it's time for me to bust my ass, work hard and go out there and do what I know I can. Then I'll have the next 50 or 60 years of my life to enjoy it."
What do you think? Is Browne the incredible talent that many fans once thought, or is he destined to be a high-level gate keeper? I personally think he has all the tools necessary to get the job done against Barnett, but will he be able to implement his gameplan?
Photo: Winslow Townson for USA TODAY Sports