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!


The Brain vs. The Heart: UFC 191

Alex Chambers (+950) vs. Paige VanZant (-1450)

The Brain: The PPV kicks off with a women’s strawweight fight between fast rising Paige VanZant and the Aussie Alex Chambers. Both fighters have recent wins over Kailin Curran, VanZant by TKO and Chambers by submission. VanZant is still developing as a fighter, but she is training with elite talent at Team Alpha Male. She throws high volume, especially in the clinch. VanZant is also active on the ground, but she has found herself in some bad positions. Luckily for her, she’s managed to escape from them so far. Chambers comes into the fight 15 years older than VanZant, but with only one more fight. I haven’t seen anything from Alex that suggests she can handle VanZant’s output and pace for three full rounds, and apparently neither do oddsmakers. The heavily hyped VanZant is a massive betting favorite. While I find these odds a little too lopsided, I do think VanZant will wear down Chambers and get the win. VanZant by Submission

The Heart: I have nothing against Chambers, but I’m all aboard the VanZant hype train. At only 21 years old, 12 Gauge has already built quite the name for herself. While some will argue that it is mostly because of her looks, if you have seen her last two fights, you’d know that she is a talented and exciting fighter that seemingly improves every time she steps into the cage. VanZant by Submission

Corey Anderson (+130) vs. Jan Blachowicz (-150)

The Brain: While this fight may lack some of the big names that the other fights on the PPV have, this should be an exciting one to watch and is my pick for “Fight of the Night”, at least until the main event. Blachowicz is primarily a striker, while Anderson is a wrestler that has constantly developed his striking game. Blachowicz has a 100% takedown defense rate in the UFC right now, but I think that will change in this fight. Anderson has aggressively and frequently pursued takedowns, and I think he’ll get Blachowicz to the mat at least a couple times. This should be a fun fight with both fighters getting some good shots in. A good portion of this fight will probably take place on the feet, and I think Anderson’s high volume will be the difference. Anderson by Decision

The Heart: Tough fight to pick for the heart. I had the pleasure of sitting right behind Corey (among other fighters) when I attended UFC on FOX 16 in Chicago and he seemed like a real nice guy. On the other hand, I’ve always liked Blachowicz’s style (though I feel he could throw some more combos). With Blachowicz being 1-1 in the UFC, a loss could see him receive his walking papers. Anderson is 2-1 and won TUF 19, so he’s likely safe regardless. Therefore, I’m going with Blachowicz. Blachowicz by Decision

Anthony Johnson (-650) vs. Jimi Manuwa (+475)

The Brain: Two heavy-fisted light heavyweights meet in the middle of the PPV. This fight is going to be fireworks, and I fully expect the winner to get a “Performance of the Night” bonus. Manuwa got back on the winning track by taking a decision from Blachowicz in his last fight. Meanwhile, Johnson was on a nine fight win streak until he was submitted by Daniel Cormier in his last fight. Manuwa is a heavy handed fighter, but tends to absorb the same amount of punches that he lands, which is a bad strategy against Rumble. Anyone that has seen Rumble fight knows that he tries to put your lights out with every punch he throws. I think he’ll catch Manuwa and pound him out for the stoppage. Johnson by TKO

The Heart: The heart is admittedly a little hesitant when it comes to Rumble these days. I absolutely love watching him fight, but the continued claims of problems with women makes me incredibly uneasy. For that reason, I’m going with Jimi. Manuwa by TKO

Andrei Arlovski (-155) vs. Frank Mir (+135)

The Brain: Two longtime vets square off in the co-main event. It wasn’t that long ago, many fans were calling for Mir and Arlovski to retire. Now Mir is on a two fight win streak and Arlovski is on a five fight win streak and on the cusp of a title shot. The tale of the tape for both fighters is very similar all the way down to age. The only significant difference is that Mir will probably come in around 20 pounds heavier than Arlovski. I see this fight playing out on the feet, and if their last fights are any indication, this could be an all-out war. I don’t think Mir looked all that impressive in his win against Duffy, and I think Arlovski looked pretty solid against Browne. I think Arlovski will be able to find Mir’s chin and continue to hit it until he finally crumbles. Arlovski by TKO

The Heart: I’ve been a big fan of both men for as long as I can remember. These two have been around for more than 14 years. Not many fighters can say that. I really hate to see either guy lose. However, I would love to see Arlovski get a title shot in 2016 (how many people thought that would ever be possible). Arlovski by TKO

Demetrious Johnson (-550) vs. John Dodson (+425)

The Brain: The main event is a rematch for the flyweight championship between Demetrious Johnson and John Dodson. Both fighters have improved since their first fight, but I think Johnson has improved more. If true, that could be bad news for Dodson. However, he has power in his hands and is always dangerous. Dodson has TKO’d bantamweight champion TJ Dillashaw and he was able to knock Mighty Mouse down three times in their first fight. I think this fight will come down to Dodson’s ability to stop Johnson’s takedowns and his ability to get back up from them quickly if it does go to the ground. I see this fight playing out much like the first fight, with Johnson avoiding most of the power shots and continually getting the fight to the ground. Johnson by Decision

The Heart: I like both fighters here as well, and find them both fun to watch (yes, even Mighty Mouse). Many people aren’t a fan of the flyweight division, and I think a shakeup at the top of the division could be just what it needs. Also, anyone that knows me knows I’m a big Dodson fan. I’ve also always liked his happy demeanor during weigh-ins and other appearances. He also just welcomed a beautiful little girl into the world earlier this week. Dodson by TKO

Any questions or comments? Hit me up on Twitter @IAMMAEverlast or comment below.

About the Author:

IAMMA. MMA superfan looking to be the voice of the fans. Tune in to read my Brain vs Heart picks & MMA event recaps!