For the most part, Conor McGregor is looked at as a pure striker. However Gilbert Burns seems to think that people forget how good the Irishman’s grappling actually is.
As far as BJJ pedigrees are concerned, few in MMA have the resume that Burns has. He is a multiple time World Champion on the mats, and has used this to help propel him to top contender-ship in the UFC’s 170lb ranks.
While he has developed his striking to a point where he can stand with the likes of Tyron Woodley, Gilbert is still ultra dangerous on the ground. It is safe to say that he knows good BJJ when he sees it.
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Gilbert Burns Rates Conor McGregor’s Grappling
As someone with such a high level ground game, people have asked Gilbert Burns to grade other people’s BJJ skills. Most recently, he was asked to look at Conor McGregor, ahead of his UFC 257 rematch with Dustin Poirier.
While McGregor is known primarily as a skilled striker, Gilbert explained in a recent video on his YouTube channel, that he thinks Conor’s ground game is underrated. He says that Conor is not the best, but he is still very good.
“He’s good. People think he’s very bad, but he’s very good. People don’t remember he swept Nate Diaz in their first fight,” Burns said.
“I think he’s very underrated. People say ‘All you have to do is take him down.’ First of all, when the guy controls the distance like Conor, it’s not easy to take the guy down.
“Another thing that people don’t realize, is those guys that kick a lot, they develop a lot of power in their hips. So those hips are very flexible and very strong.
“It’s that type of flexibility and strength that is the same one that you use to defend the takedowns.”
“The point is, Conor’s jiu-jitsu is not bad. People underestimate that, but he is a good grappler the way I see,” Burns continued.
“For sure, he’s not a grappler. It’s not his natural thing, but for sure he’s put a lot of focus on that.”
What do you think of this assessment from Gilbert Burns? Will Conor McGregor’s grappling be enough to earn him the win at UFC 257?