The possibility of having to fight a friend is an occupational hazard for mixed martial artists. It’s part of the job, but that doesn’t make it any easier when a fighter sees a training partner or friend’s name listed on a bout agreement.
When former heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski found out that he was being paired up against former training partner Travis Browne on the UFC 187 main card, he wasn’t enthusiastic about the match-up.
“I don’t like this fight. I don’t want to fight him, but it is what it is,” Arlovski recently told Submission Radio. “If I want to move forward I just have to fight Travis Browne, and absolutely he’s my friend. We were teammates for a long time and deep inside I don’t like this fight.”
The two were teammates at Team Jackson-Winkeljohn’s in Albuquerque, but Browne left the camp last year and joined the Glendale Fight Club in California. While in Albuquerque, Arlovski lived at Browne’s residence.
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“He just left before his last fight. He left Albuquerque and he trains in California. It’s funny because he let me live in his house when I was in the camp before my Bigfoot (Antonio Silva) fight,” said Arlovski.
Arlovski is currently ranked seventh in the UFC’s heavyweight division while Browne occupies the third-ranked slot. As it often does in MMA, friendship gets put aside for opportunity.
“Yeah, he’s tough. He’s dangerous definitely, but it’s a business you know. It’s nothing personal, it’s business,” he said.