10 great fighters who never got a UFC title shot
#2 Travis Browne
Ronda Rousey’s husband may have ended his UFC tenure on an awful four-fight losing streak, but back in 2013 he was literally inches away from gaining a Heavyweight title shot and may well have secured one had it not been for the injury-prone nature of then-champion Cain Velasquez.
Browne debuted in the UFC in 2010 and reeled off four wins and a draw before a loss to Antonio Silva in late 2013 stalled his momentum somewhat. He returned with a vengeance in 2013, though, and picked up the biggest three wins of his career – stopping Gabriel Gonzaga, Alistair Overeem and Josh Barnett, all by TKO.
The win over Barnett at UFC 168 should’ve been enough to earn him a shot at Velasquez’s title, but unfortunately for him, the champ was banged up following his successful title defence over Junior Dos Santos two months prior at UFC 166. Instead, the UFC matched Browne with fellow top contender Fabricio Werdum, and the pair faced off in the main event of UFC on Fox 11.
Werdum surprisingly outstruck Browne and beat him to a unanimous decision, and that was the closest ‘Hapa’ ever got to a title shot. He did bounce back with a win over Brendan Schaub, but by that point, he’d made an ill-fated move to Edmond Tarverdyan’s Glendale Fight Club and only won one fight in his next five. He retired from MMA in 2017, but his 2013 run remains impressive – and unfortunate not to be enough for a title shot.