Do you ever find your fight predictions coming down to an internal battle between who you hope will win and who you think will really win, even if you don’t fully admit it to yourself until after watching the opponent’s hand raised? Do you recall times when you picked against a fighter you didn’t like who you knew had the advantage all along, and you refused to acknowledge the fact?
When trying to keep an open mind leading up to a fight, many of us find ourselves making predictions on who will win based on who we want to win, even if it’s only on a subliminal level. The difficulty lies in separating your personal feelings towards a fighter, whether positive or negative, from a fighter’s proven ability and fight history.
In this column, I will delve into the main cards of key UFC events and explore that unending struggle of Brain vs. Heart. This following is the third fight I’ve broken down headed into UFC 202 on Saturday.
Tim Means vs. Sabah Homasi
Opening the main card of UFC 202 we have another fighter making their UFC debut, Sabah Homasi. Having fought for Titan FC I was able to check out one of his recent bouts against Vitor Regis Eustaquio from June of this year. In the early goings, Vitor threw jabs out at Homasi, each time coming forward with his chin out and dropping his right hand. Homasi took advantage and landed a left hook on Vitor’s jaw which sent him to the mat only 20 seconds into the round. Tim Means has a lot of experience and while he is unlikely to leave the same opportunities for Homasi to exploit in this matchup, I was impressed with Homasi taking advantage of the opening early on.
Homasi last fought at Titan FC 40 which means he’ll be making a two-week turnaround into this fight. This can give Homasi a chance to build on his momentum as he has already got three (T)KO victories to his name this year. On the other hand, you have to wonder whether Homasi would have had enough time to recover and avoid tiring himself out from jumping straight into another training camp.
Homasi definitely has promise, however I think the combination of a jump up in competition, a two-week turnaround, and the nerves that come with making your UFC debut on PPV make this an uphill battle for him.
Brain’s Prediction: Means via TKO in the second round.
Love watching new talent come into the UFC and shock the world, but I don’t know if that’d be a good thing for Homasi in the long run. Homasi got the fight against Means as an injury replacement on short notice. Therefore, the UFC is likely to give him another fight after this, win or lose, to thank him for taking the fight, as is their repertoire. With a loss, Homasi will likely be matched against an opponent with similar experience which will provide him with the opportunity to rise through the ranks at a steady pace. However, with a win over Means he may be pushed too far in the rankings too soon which could be detrimental. The UFC have been guilty of this on more than one occasion and for that reason…
Heart’s Prediction: Means via Unanimous Decision.
So there are my predictions for UFC 202. Do you agree with me or am I letting my heart rule my brain with some of these predictions? Either way this is looking like a great night of fights and I can’t wait for my 3am alarm Sunday morning to watch live.
(Ross Clark is an MMATorch contributor from London, England. He has trained in MMA at the London Fight Factor and has attended classes in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Muay Thai, Wrestling, and MMA. He attained his blue belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu last October. His “Heart vs. Brain” column is inspired by his night’s out talking with friends about upcoming fights, debating who will win, and seeing people struggle between rationally, objectively predicting an outcome versus and the emotions that come up regarding whom they want to see win. He analyzes upcoming big name fights by breaking down the two approaches and acknowledging when one approach leads to a different prediction.)