The winner of Saturday’s heavyweight clash between Josh Barnett and Travis Browne is expected to square off with Fabricio Werdum in what would likely serve as a No. 1 contender’s bout for the UFC heavyweight title.
UFC President Dana White confirmed the promotion’s plan to pit the winner of Barnett’s UFC 168 clash with Brown against “Vai Cavalo,” though no timetable was given for that potential booking.
UFC 168 takes place Dec. 28 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas and is headlined by a middleweight title confrontation pitting reigning belt holder Chris Weidman against former longtime divisional kingpin Anderson Silva.
The evening’s pay-per-view card will also see Barnett collide with Browne, who enters his duel with “The Warmaster” riding back-to-back victories. “Hapa” last competed on Aug. 17, when he rebounded from a shaky start against Alistair Overeem to knock out the former Strikeforce champ at UFC Fight Night 26.
Like his foe, Barnett also rides a two-fight winning streak into the bout, as the ex-UFC champion choked out the overmatched Nandor Guelmino in January before making a successful Octagon return at UFC 164. Barnett knocked out Frank Mir in that Aug. 31 appearance, finishing his fellow former champion with a knee in just under two minutes.