Israel Adesanya will be going with the underdog at UFC 273 this weekend.
Gilbert Burns takes on Khamzat Chimaev in a highly-anticipated welterweight contest at UFC 273 on Saturday night.
Burns will be the toughest opponent of Chimaev’s career so far, with many in the combat sports world high on the latter’s potential.
But despite all that, Burns is a heavy betting underdog and many are picking Chimaev to come out on top in their upcoming bout.
Israel Adesanya: I’ll Be Rooting For Gilbert Burns
Not Adesanya, however.
While he did praise Chimaev’s recent run of success, “The Last Stylebender” also feels Burns has more than enough in his game to get the job done.
“I know Burns,” Adesanya said on his YouTube channel (via MMA Junkie). “He don’t play about it. He’s real. He’s really about this life. I’m glad that he’s up at welterweight now because he’s a lot better at this weight class. But Khamzat on a roll. His last opponent, ‘The Leech’ (Li Jingliang), was the most impressive opponent he’s beat so far.
“Gilbert Burns is good, but he gets hit. Everyone gets hit, and he’s got power in his punches. You know what? I’ll be rooting for Burns. I think he can get it done.”
Of course, Chimaev is not only targeting the welterweight crown, but the middleweight crown as well, with him notably claiming beating Adesanya would be easier than Kamaru Usman.
Did that play a role in Adesanya picking Burns? We won’t know for now.
You can watch Adesanya’s full breakdown below: