Travis Browne got off the couch and 'worked his ass off' to become top UFC heavyweight contender

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Spor

Top UFC Heavyweight contender Travis Browne says he's just a normal every day guy, the only difference is, he decided to "work his ass off" to become one of the best fighters in all of mixed martial arts (MMA).

Travis Browne has solidified himself as one of the elite heavyweight fighters in all of mixed martial arts (MMA); a "new breed of fighter," if you will.

And he's only been in the fight game for a little under four years.

So how did a former basketball standout turn into one of the best big men the sport of MMA has to offer? It's simple, he decided to get of his couch and "work his ass off" after watching three former champions rule the 265-pound landscape.

"Hapa" spoke to Fox Sports prior to his showdown against Josh Barnett at UFC 168:

"I'm that guy who works his ass off, who shows the guys sitting on the couch that he should go do what he loves. I'm an average person, I just decided to work hard and dedicate myself to something. That's the only thing that separates people like me from people sitting on the couch. I was on the couch watching Tim Sylvia beat Ricco Rodriguez, Randy Couture beat Tim Sylvia, and Josh Barnett fight in PRIDE. I was one of these guys on the couch who said I could do it without actually doing a f---ing thing about it. My choice was to become great, to become better than average."

Better than average, indeed.

Browne went on to defeat Barnett at The MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, knocking out "The Warmaster" via elbow strikes to the head in the opening frame (watch it again here).

The win marked three in a row for Travis, winning two previous against Alistair Overeem and Gabriel Gonzaga.

In fact, Browne has only suffered one loss in his MMA career, getting knocked out by Antonio Silva at UFC on FX 5 last October. Prior to the loss, the Jackson-Winkeljohn - trained fighter had won 13 in a row with one draw sandwiched in between.

And as "Hapa" begins to climb the 265-pound rankings on his way to a potential title fight against division kingpin Cain Velasquez, he might already has his next fight lined up in the form of Fabricio Werdum.

Can he make it four straight?

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