Gilbert Burns sees a key difference between himself and his upcoming opponent, UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman.
Burn will challenge Usman for the welterweight title in the main event of UFC 258 this Saturday. The matchup features many interesting variables. Burns and Usman have trained together extensively at Sanford MMA, and also have many stylistic similarities as grappling specialists with well-rounded skillsets.
According to Burns, however, there is at lest one key difference between them.
“That’s the difference between me and Kamaru,” Burns told MMA Fighting ahead of UFC 258. “Kamaru looks first to domination. He wants to dominate you, put you in a bad spot, make you tired, wear you out and then beat you up. I’m different on that than Kamaru.
“I want to finish you, I want to beat you up, knock you out, submit you,” Burns added. “If I cannot, if I think you’re going to stay there, then I think of domination. But first, I’m thinking of finishing. That’s what I’m looking for and I’m looking forward to being dangerous everywhere in that fight.”
In the same interview, Burns opened opened up on his previous training sessions with Usman, explaining how they could factor into the pair’s UFC 258 title fight.
“I know a lot of things about him, he knows a lot of things about me,” Burns said. “I’m training with a lot of teammates that know a lot of things about him. They’ve kind of helped me out a lot. It’s a little weird because I still like Kamaru a lot. I have so much respect, but the way I see it, it’s going to be a hard competition. It’s going to be a hard day at the desk and I don’t know if it’s good or bad to know the guy the way I know. I know a lot of things about him and I make a lot of strategy about that but he knows too so it’s hard to say if it benefits or not.
“I think it benefits, because I know how hard I need to be ready, and I’m working to get as ready as I need but so is he,” Burns added. “I don’t know if it helps so much. We’re about to find out. This is going to be the first time that I fight against a guy that I trained very much. We’re about to find out on Feb. 13.”
What’s your prediction for this Saturday’s Kamaru Usman vs. Gilbert Burns fight?