The Brain vs. The Heart: UFC 193
Welcome to The Brain vs. The Heart. Everyone has that internal battle with themselves about which fighter you think will win vs. which fighter you actually want to win. The Brain vs The Heart takes you on a journey inside the mind (and heart) of IAMMA to tackle the battle head-on. Who will win? Let’s find out!
Jared Rosholt (-105) vs. Stefan Struve (-115)
The Brain: Two of the younger fighters in the heavyweight division kick off the PPV card. Struve will have a seven inch reach advantage and a nine inch height advantage. His problem throughout his career has been using that to his advantage. While he occasionally uses kicks and jabs to keep his opponents at range, more often than not, he will fight within striking distance of his opponent. He defense has been pretty terrible. Rosholt will definitely try to close the distance, but will have to watch out for knees in the clinch. Rosholt is primarily a wrestler and has a very heavy top game, but he will have to be sure to watch out for the long limbs of Struve. While I could see Rosholt getting the TKO, I think Struve will finally do a better job of using his range (though to be fair I think that each will be the time Struve finally uses his reach to his advantage). Struve by TKO
The Heart: I’ve always liked Struve and I’m glad he was able to get his heart problems under control. I still think that if he shored up his defense that he could be a real force in the division. I’m rooting for him not only because I like him, but because when he loses, he loses in brutal fashion. Struve by TKO
Uriah Hall (-145) vs. Robert Whittaker (+125)
The Brain: Hall came off of TUF as the “next Anderson Silva” due to his flashy style and brutal finishes on the show, he was initially seen as a bit of a disappointment. Make no mistake, even though he’s lost a couple UFC fights and hasn’t finished all of his opponents in devastating fashion, that Hall definitely is a dangerous opponent. Since his time on the show he has evolved from constantly throwing flashy spinning strikes, to a bit more technical approach. That was definitely evident in his last fight, when he scored a major upset win over Gegard Mousasi. Whittaker is definitely a dangerous opponent and this is a good test for both fighters. Whittaker does a great job of stringing together strikes and has outstanding takedown defense. I definitely think this fight plays out on the feet, and with as dangerous of strikers as both of these guys are, I think one of them is going to get the TKO. I think both have a solid future, but I think Hall gets the win here. Hall by TKO
The Heart: I really like both fighters. I could see both going quite a ways up the ranks. I think that Hall gets a lot of unnecessary flack because people chose to buy into the TUF hype that surrounded him. I like how far he has come since then, and I would like to see him continue his run. Hall by TKO
Mark Hunt (-275) vs. Antonio Silva (+235)
The Brain: While their first fight was a five round FOTY contender, I don’t think this fight comes anywhere close to that. Both fighters have been TKO’d multiple times since then, but Silva’s have seemed much worse when you take into account the fighters that beat them. This fight should play out on the feet like the first fight, but neither fighter’s chins are as strong as they used to be. I expect them to trade shots until someone to go down. Silva’s decline has been much worse IMO, especially after he stopped taking TRT. I think Hunt finds his chin early and puts him to sleep. Hunt by TKO
The Heart: I really dislike fighters that have failed PED tests. The only exception I have to that is with marijuana. While I think they should be punished (FAIRLY) because it IS banned and they know it is, I don’t hold that against those fighters the way I do PED users. Silva supposedly needs TRT to treat acromegaly, a syndrome that causes excessive growth hormone, which seems plausible given his size, but he was still over the allowable limit. In addition to that, there are a couple things that make me write that off as legit. First, he failed a drug test in 2008 for steroids, which can contribute to “needing” TRT later in life. Second, if he truly needed it, then he would have to take it, which would’ve forced him to retire. His body has looked noticeably different since he was known to have been taking TRT, and it appears to have affected his performance. PED issues aside, I have always enjoyed watching MARK HUNTOOOO! Extremely easy choice for me here. Hunt by TKO
Joanna Jedrzejczyk (-2000) vs. Valerie Letourneau (+1250)
The Brain: I’m not certain, but I would imagine that there have never been two title fights on a card with more lopsided odds in UFC history. Letourneau steps into this fight in place of the injured Gadelha, which is disappointing because I was definitely looking forward to that rematch. Both fighters have quite a bit in common. They are both strikers with a relatively high output and they both have good takedown defense as well. The big difference however is the level of those skills. While Letourneau is more than competent in all areas, Jedrzejczyk’s skills are simply elite. She has serious power and is extremely athletic. I see this entire fight playing out on the feet, and I expect Jedrzejczyk to absolutely light up Letourneau. It will probably take a while to wear Letourneau down, but I definitely think Jedrzejczyk will eventually get it done. Jedrzejczyk by TKO
The Heart: I have absolutely nothing against Letourneau and give her props for taking the fight. She has shown improvement in her last few outings, but I think she’s simply outclassed here. I really enjoy the charismatic Joanna Champion. I want to see her continue her reign at the top, and I can’t wait for the Gadelha rematch. I personally think Gadelha won the first fight, but I think Jedrzejczyk will take the next one in another exciting fight. Jedrzejczyk by TKO
Ronda Rousey (-2000) vs. Holly Holm (+1250)
The Brain: The odds are pretty crazy for this one as well, but outside of Holm landing a fluke headkick, I just don’t see any way she wins. I like Holm, but I think her striking is a little overrated. She’s definitely a good boxer, but she lacks true power in her hands. She poses practically zero risk to Rousey on the ground and has shown an aversion to fighting on the ground against opponents that were much less skilled than Rousey. While Holm is probably the biggest fighter in terms of size and athleticism, I don’t expect that to slow Rousey down. I think Rousey closes the distance early, gets this to the ground, and locks in the armbar. I think this fight will be over in less than two minutes. Rousey by Armbar
The Heart: I know there are plenty of people that are sick of hearing about Rousey and want nothing more than to see her lose. I’m not one of those people I’m a big Rousey fan and fully expect her to turn in another completely dominating performance. I’m not sure what’s next, but we all know there is only one fight fans REALLY want. Rousey by Armbar
This is one of the extremely rare occasions where all of my picks for the Brain and the Heart line up. The Brain is currently leading with a 22-7 record. The Heart is eight wins behind at 14-15. Obviously the lead won’t change, but hopefully both can add five wins to their record.
Any questions or comments? Hit me up on Twitter @IAMMAEverlast or comment below.