Exclusive: Gilbert Burns Thinks Belal Muhammad Doesn’t Deserve Title Shot, Claims Ian Garry Haters Are Wrong

UFC welterweight Gilbert Burns joined MiddleEasy for an exclusive interview ahead of his upcoming fight.

Gilbert Burns
Gilbert Burns (left), Belal Muhammad (middle), and Ian Garry (right)(Images via Instagram @Gilbert_Burns @BullyB170 @IanGarry)

Gilbert Burns believes Belal Muhammad doesn’t deserve the next UFC welterweight title shot. 

Earlier this month, Dana White announced Alex Pereira would defend his light heavyweight title against Jamahal Hill in the UFC 300 main event on April 13. Shortly after the announcement, The Schmo reported that the UFC made the matchup after several proposed fights featuring welterweight king Leon Edwards fell through. 

The Schmo also confirmed number two-ranked Belal Muhammad was surprisingly not offered the UFC 300 fight against Edwards. Instead, the following three fighters were called upon for the opportunity – Khamzat Chimaev, Shavkat Rakhmonov, and Islam Makhachev. 

Number four-ranked welterweight Gilbert Burns recently did an exclusive interview with MiddleEasy to discuss various topics. When asked about Muhammad, Burn started by saying this about the next 170-pound title shot:

“I know the UFC has to put on the best fights. I don’t think honestly Belal Muhammad deserves to fight for the title, but honestly I’m not intrigued.”

Burns continued by explaining why he thinks the three fighters offered to Leon Edwards didn’t accept the UFC 300 main event opportunity: 

“I knew they would try to make the Khamzat [Chimaev] fight. I don’t think he did because of the Ramadan. That’s what he said or maybe a visa issue. I don’t think Shavkat [Rakhmonov] got the fight because I think he’s still a little bit injured with his ankle. Islam [Makhachev] maybe a Ramadan situation too. I’m not surprised. The UFC wants to make the biggest fights, the craziest fights, the fights that are going to sell the most.”

Watch Burns’ exclusive interview with MiddleEasy below: 

Gilbert Burns praises Ian Garry for being “nice guy” despite negative reception from fans 

In Dec. 2023, Ian Garry was scheduled to fight Gilbert Burns’ close friend and training partner Vicente Luque at UFC 296. Burns is also Garry’s friend and former training partner, putting him at a crossroads before ‘The Future’ pulled out with an illness. 

Last Saturday, Garry returned to action and defeated Geoff Neal by unanimous decision during the UFC 298 main card. The undefeated welterweight contender received backlash for the performance, adding to the negative reception he has among MMA fans. 

During the exclusive interview with MiddleEasy, Gilbert Burns had this to say about Garry and his latest win: 

“I like Ian [Garry] a lot, especially all the crazy things that people kind of talking about him. He’s a nice guy, family guy, works very hard…I talked to Ian before his fight [at UFC 298]. I think he fought a great fight against Geoff Neal. People always try to hate a little bit on the guy, but I think he fought an excellent fight. He moved, beautiful footwork, beautiful combinations…I have nothing negative to say about him. He has always been a nice guy.”

On March 9, Gilbert Burns will make his twenty-second walk to the Octagon during the UFC 299 main card. Burns looks to bounce back after losing against Belal Muhammad, which will be easier said than done, as he’s scheduled to fight rising superstar Jack Della Maddalena.

Published on February 22, 2024 at 5:37 pm
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