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Gilbert Burns ‘Sees A Finish’ In Title Fight With Kamaru Usman

Burns Is Expected To Be The Next Challenger For Usman's Welterweight Crown After Pulling Out Of Their Planned UFC 251 Fight Due To COVID-19

Gilbert Burns ‘Sees A Finish’ In Title Fight With Kamaru Usman

Gilbert Burns is only looking for the finish when he faces Kamaru Usman next.

Burns was initially expected to challenge Usman for the welterweight title at UFC 251 last month. However, he tested positive for COVID-19 and had to withdraw from the fight with Jorge Masvidal later stepping in on short notice.

Masvidal would lose via unanimous decision with UFC president Dana White stating Burns — who later recovered from COVID-19 —  was to be next in line afterwards. And unlike Masvidal, the Brazilian believes he has plenty of advantages over his former teammate.

“I see a lot of advantages. For sure, my jiu-jitsu,” Burns told Helen Yee when asked about his advantages over Usman. “I think any wrestler in that division like Colby Covington — Try taking me down, just try it. I’ll be more than happy to not make it easy for guys to take me down. I might defend that shot or even take you guys down. As soon as I get on top, or even on bottom, I’m able to submit or sweep or do whatever with any one of these guys in that division.

“Not only for the champion, but for anyone, I’m a threat on my feet too. I can kick, I can punch. I hit way harder than these guys. I have all the explosiveness. And I’m fresh in that division. I don’t know how I didn’t make that change [moving up from lightweight] before, but right now I feel so good for that division.”

Burns Always Looking For Finish

Although he didn’t get the finish in his last fight over Tyron Woodley, Burns was impressive in a lopsided unanimous decision win over the former champion back in May.

This time, however, he hopes and expects to get the finish. He just doesn’t know how.

“I see a finish. I don’t know how,” he added. “I know I can submit him. I know I can knock him out. I’m just going to work super hard to make sure I’m in the best shape of my life. We’re already planning. I have that trip to Brazil — a little vacation with my family — but I’m already excited to come back and start training.

“I’m hungry, I have so much energy right now that I see finish. Don’t matter, if it goes 25 minutes. … I’m going to be looking for the finish every single minute, every single second of that fight. That’s what I’m looking for. And I believe that’s what I’m going to do.”

There is no expected date for an Usman vs. Burns title fight, however, the latter prefers a December date.

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