Gilbert Burns Admits Khamzat Chimaev Fight Is ‘A Big Risk’ Ahead Of UFC 273

    ByRoss Markey

    Mar 31, 2022
    Gilbert Burns

    Ahead of his upcoming UFC 273 clash against the undefeated, Khamzat Chimaev next weekend, one-time welterweight title challenger, Gilbert Burns has admitted that he is taking “a big risk” sharing the Octagon with the #10 ranked finisher.

    Burns, the #2 ranked welterweight in the current rankings, most recently featured at UFC 264 in July of last year – co-headlined the high-profile card against former two-time title chaser, Stephen Thompson, scoring a unanimous decision victory.

    The win returned Burns to the winner’s enclosure after he had suffered an eventual third round knockout loss to reigning division kingpin and former training partner, Kamaru Usman in February of last year.

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    Gilbert Burns has competed under the UFC banner since July 2014 — debuting at lightweight

    The loss snapped a run of four straight victories at the welterweight limit for Burns, who returned to 170lbs with a victory over Alexey Kunchenko, before besting the trio of Gunnar Nelson, Demian Maia, and in a standout performance, bested former undisputed champion, Tyron Woodley over five rounds.

    For Chimaev, the former Brave CF contender earned the #10 rank in the official welterweight pile as well as his tenth consecutive professional victory back in October on ‘Fight Island’ – stopping Li Jingliang with a stunning first round rear-naked choke.

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    Booked to meet with Burns next weekend in Jacksonville, Florida – Chimaev, who remains a sizeable betting favorite over the Niteroi native ahead of UFC 273, has been openly labelled as a “risk” to his place in the rankings by Burns.

    “Whoever the UFC puts in front of me, I’ll fight,” Gilbert Burns told MMA Junkie. “I wanted to fight with Colby (Covington), but he had a fight, so Khamzat (Chimaev) was the only one that wanted to fight. I know he’s a big risk and he’s #11 (sic) and very tough, but if I want to be champion, I need to fight everyone.”

    Burns has admitted that he’s also taken inspiration from the route of his compatriots, Glover Teixeira and Charles Oliveira, who eventually scooped UFC gold despite initial setbacks.

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    “I’m following the example of Glover Teixeira and Charles Oliveira,” Gilbert Burns said. “I need to fight everyone. He’s (Khamzat Chimaev0 tough and a big risk, but I still want to fight him.”