UFC Fight Night 26 card: Alistair Overeem vs Travis Browne fight prediction, preview and breakdown

Photo by Esther Lin for MMAFighting.com

Alistair Overeem hopes to rebound from a devastating knockout loss when he hooks 'em up with Travis Browne in a hulking Heavyweight co-main event planned for UFC Fight Night 26, which takes place from TD Bank Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. Will "Demolition Man" toss his name back into the proverbial title contender "mix" or will "Hapa" be the latest dream smasher to upend the Dutchman? Jason Probst for MMAmania.com breaks it all down below.

No other mixed martial arts (MMA) fighters can bring the firepower like huge Heavyweight stars, with the possibilities of a highlight-reel stoppage pretty much better than any division in the sport.

Given the current landscape of the weight class, the titanic showdown between Alistair Overeem and Travis Browne the will serve as the co-main event of UFC Fight Night 26, which takes tonight (Sat., Aug. 17, 2013) at TD Bank Garden in Boston, Mass., could propel the winner into the title shot conversation depending on the impressiveness of the outcome.

And given their proclivities for stand up action, this match up figures to be a can't-miss battle. In other words, don't go to the fridge or the water closet because it can end quickly ... and violently.

Check out a complete breakdown of the UFC Fight Night 26 co-main event between Alistair Overeem vs. Travis Browne below:

The Breakdown

It's always fascinating to see how a fighter comes back after two seminal events: Getting destroyed against a guy who was supposed to steamroll and getting busted for performance-enhancing drugs (PEDs). In Overeem's case, he's got both subplots attached to his name after his third-round knockout loss to Antonio Silva in Feb. 2013, and the preceding suspension he was slapped with for using PEDs.

Mentally, he needs a big win here, especially to recoup the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) investment in what it thought would be a game-changing Heavyweight to remake the division in a time of considerable flux.

For Browne, staying in there and not getting taken out early will help his confidence greatly. He has to look at the string of defeats Overeem's had where people aren't overwhelmed, and have stuck around to come on late, taking out "The Reem," who is the definition of a Heavyweight front-runner. He's incredibly dangerous, but he seems to lose the fire when opponents don't crumble from his opening-moments assault.

The Pick

Being 6'7 and 250 pounds means you can hurt people with almost anything that connects, and Brown figures to do that early if he can exploit an opening. He'll move and circle to deny Overeem simple attack angles, and then explode in close, blasting "Demolition Man" with strikes and turning the tables to set the tone early that he's not going to be bullied.

Brown is a real athletic guy and with his size, and heart, I think he's the wrong dude for Overeem to fight right now, especially because the Blackzilians-trained fighter hasn't solved his conditioning issues after adding all that weight.

The two should have some huge exchanges in the first half of the fight, but at some point, Browne will prove to be the better-conditioned athletic, using his height and frame to topple Overeem to the mat, where he'll rain down some ground and pound en route to a stunning knockout win in round two.

Browne via knockout

Remember, too, that MMAmania.com will provide LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC Fight Night 26 card this weekend, starting with the Facebook "Prelims," which are scheduled to begin at 4 p.m. ET, right on through the FOX Sports 1-televised under card bouts at 6 p.m. ET and then the main card action, which is slated to begin at 8 p.m. ET.

Jason Probst can be reached at twitter.com/jasonprobst

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