Gilbert Burns ‘Not Done’ With Khamzat Chimaev After UFC 273
Gilbert Burns may have received his win bonus following his epic clash with Khamzat Chimaev at this past weekend’s UFC 273, but “Durinho” wants to make it known that’s absolutely not the same as actually getting a win.
“I am very critical of myself,” Burns said MMA Underground .. “I think if he had done more stuff, such as calf kicks, calf kicks when the stance was changed, body kicks when it was orthodox, calf kickes when he was orthodox, and freaking head movements that I trained so hard, I could have won the fight.
” I was the one who threw more shots during the last round. However, I got hurt in that round. I was hurt briefly. I can remember feeling very wobbly. Then he gave me another shot, which kind of rolled my up. I then got back and was throwing lots of bombs. But it was enjoyable, just like every other time I’ve been there. I don’t like to lose. I think I’ve made this clear a few times. But I do like being there. “
Despite residing at the top of the UFC’s official welterweight rankings, Burns (20-5 MMA, 13-5 UFC) was one of the few athletes willing to face the undefeated upstart Chimaev (11-0 MMA, 5-0 UFC) and was a massive underdog in the contest, according to the oddsmakers. Burns proved that he was capable of the task, clipping Chimaev during the second round, pushing the highly-regarded prospect until the end, but losing a unanimous decision. Still, UFC president Dana White was so excited with the contest, he not only awarded the bout the evening’s $50,000 “Fight of the Night” bonus but also gave Burns his contracted win bonus, as well.
Burns stated that the additional income helps to offset frustration but doesn’t replace the feeling of victory.
” I think the fight was very close. It could have gone either way,” Burns stated. “I hate to say, “Oh, I think that I won.’ It’s up to the judges to decide. Although I am not a judge, I believe it was close.
” We put on a show. I took a chance, but I’m happy. I won the win bonus. We won the ‘Fight of the Night. I’m happy. I’m not as happy as if we had a win, but I am happy. After showing respect to each other on fight night, Burns, Chimaev and others have been engaging in some online banter, posting photos and graphics to remind one another of their best moments. One such meme making the rounds points out that Chimaev was hit just once in his first four UFC victories combined but was forced to survive 119 shots from Burns during their 15 minutes in the cage.
Burns stated that the back-and forth is friendly but believes the two will meet again in the future.
“For sure,” Burns said. “For certain it’s going again. We are not done. I’m still in love with him. … He was a great dance partner and I believe we could have gone deeper than we did.
“It’s still in my head. It’s not over, you know. We are not finished. Khamzat is not over. Khamzat has not left me. I will see him again. “
Burns knows that Chimaev’s top opponents moving forward include Colby Covington, or Kamaru Usman. So he knows that a rematch will have to wait. Burns would like to have the opportunity to make the next assignment a five-round affair, a request he made for Chimaev’s matchup but was denied.
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“I don’t want to do three rounds no more, bro,” Burns said. “I’m done with these three rounds. I want to do five rounds. I don’t care whether I’m the main or co-main event. Everyone can make 15 minutes. Everybody can do three rounds. All the UFC fighters can do three rounds. Not everybody does 25. A couple of guys, they’re going to be in the UFC, they’re going to be out of the UFC, and they will never do 25 minutes, but I think we missed a little bit. It could have gone wrong. If we do 25 minutes, I might have got caught in the fourth or in the last round and lose, but at least I go on my shield, you know, if I would lose – but it could go my way, too. I think people can lose a bit of entertainment or enjoy a few more rounds. Couple more digging deep. Couple more “Who wants it more?” Couple more ‘Who wants it more?’ “
Burns plans on traveling to Las Vegas later this week to support his longtime friend Vicente Luque, who faces Belal Muhammad in the main event of Saturday’s UFC on ESPN 34. He plans to meet with UFC brass while he’s there to discuss details of a new contract, and to plan his next fight later in the year. With champ Usman likely to face Leon Edwards, and Covington against Chimaev a possibility for him, Burns is focusing on the most important names.
“It’s hard to pronounce names right now, but it was something I tried,” Burns said. “I can see the top five, it’s busy, right?” We got Luque against Belal and probably Leon-Kamaru or Colby-Khamzat. That’s the essence of the picture. It might not happen, however, that’s the current picture. I’m not fighting anyone in the top five right at the moment, so now I feel like I made a big statement. I want a big fight.
“Maybe it’s the Nate Diaz or Nick Diaz, or maybe the (*] Masvidal. These are the fights I want. Sure, I took two steps back from the title, so now there’s time to do big fights and then, when the division plays out, get another guy in the top 5. But I feel I did enough to be eligible for a big fight, and that is what I want next. For now, Burns said that he will spend time with his family and his two children while his body rests. But by late summer, he’s hoping to be fighting again, and regardless of the name, he wants them ready to go 25 minutes.
” I need to heal up perfectly,” Burns stated. “Those wars take a lot from you. I won’t be sparring any time soon. I will be taking a break from the sport but still be in shape and training. I will enjoy it with my family, but I’ll be saying August, September – five rounds.
” The other thing I want to have in the deal with Dana is that I don’t want three rounds anymore. No. You can’t. Even if it’s not a main-event fight, I don’t care. I don’t want three rounds anymore. I’m done after three rounds. I’m only doing five rounds, no matter who. But I need a big fight next. “
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The author of 5 books, 3 of which are New York Times bestsellers. I’ve been published in more than 100 newspapers and magazines and am a frequent commentator on NPR.