Brian Stann, former WEC Light Heavyweight champion, looks to overtake Chael Sonnen tonight at UFC 136 in the number one contender sweepstakes to challenge Anderson Silva for the UFC Middleweight championship.
Stann brings a large and loyal following into the fight with Sonnen. He is a graduate of the Naval academy and a Marine. Sonnen respects that and had no negative things to say leading up to the fight, which is rare for the outspoken Sonnen.
Respect is one thing, but Sonnen is fighting for quite a bit too.
The winner of the fight will most likely be the next to get a title shot against the seemingly invincible Anderson Silva, whom Sonnen had "dead to rights" before getting caught in a triangle armbar in the waning minutes of the fight.
Sonnen wants nothing more than to finish what he started, even if he has to march through the former Marine to do it.
Stann has his own mission. He, like Carlos Condit, will look to be the first former WEC Champion to capture a UFC Championship without being promoted after the UFC-WEC merger.
Stann has knocked out the last two opponents, including the iron-chinned Chris "The Crippler" Leben. He would like nothing more than to knock out Sonnen and do the same to Silva to get the championship.
With a win, not only will Stann get a shot at the title, but he will get an opportunity to gain riches as a spokesman. People already revere him as a former serviceman, but his demeanor, public speaking ability and overall good-guy appearance will net him bags of money in endorsements.