Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) will return to the TD Garden in Boston, Mass., this summer (Sat., Aug. 17, 2013) with its UFC on Fox Sports 1 event. And the world's leading mixed martial arts (MMA) promotion plans to bring two of its biggest men, Alistair Overeem and Travis Browne, along for the ride.
Indeed, "Demolition Man" and "Hapa" will likely hook 'em up in a titanic heavyweight tilt, according to a report from MMA Sucka, which originally had the pair showing up at UFC 164; however, today's clarification from MMA Junkie instead drops them in "Beantown."
Overeem has not competed since a stunning knockout loss to Antonio Silva at UFC 156 in Feb. 2013, a bout that he seemed well on his way to winning until "Bigfoot" mounted a brutal comeback in the third and final round that was recently tabbed the "upset of the year" to date.
The former Strikeforce heavyweight and K-1 kickboxing champion was supposed to return to action against Junior dos Santos at UFC 160 later this month. However, the Dutchman was bit by the injury bug and forced to withdraw from a high-profile bout against "Cigano" for a second time.
Dos Santos claimed shortly thereafter that Overeem has "weird" problems that have prevented their fight, but with a "Southie" win over "Hapa" and a win for the Brazilian over Mark Hunt could put there paths on yet another collision course.
Standing in the way is, of course, Browne, a mountain of a man who stands at 6'7" and is among the few in the division who can boast a height (not necessarily size) advantage over "The Reem." More important, he has the skills to go along with his physical attributes, compiling an impressive record (5-1-1) since his Octagon debut in June 2010.
The heavy-hitting Kiwi most recently destroyed Gabriel Gonzaga with nightmarish elbows at The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 17 Finale last month, registering another highlight-reel finish to get him "back in the mix" after a technical knockout loss to Silva, the aforementioned Overeem killer.
It's set up to be a sweet scrap, the winner of which will more than likely find himself (again) on the short list of top divisional championship contenders.
While UFC on Fox Sports 1 does not have a main event (yet), the fight card already includes bouts featuring Thiago Alves vs. Matt Brown and Michael Johnson vs. Joe Lauzon. Stay tuned to MMAmania.com for the latest updates on the upcoming Boston show as they become available.