Following a five-fight victory, the Welterweight candidate entered the UFC Fight Night at the main event in Las Vegas on Saturday (9 p.m. ET, ESPN / ESPN +) knowing that his life could go on a permanent adjustment. Burns (18-3) will headline his first show title against former champion Tyrone Woodley (19-4-1).
I 100% love being there. I say this is [the octagon] my home and that’s why I can’t wait for the competition, Burns told CBS Sports’ State of Combat” podcast on Wednesday. I just like to compete. Oct I know that once I got within the octagon I bought it and I’m going to improve.
The 33-year-old Burns is going to be facing a version of Woodley, at 38, who features a lot of explaining to try to regarding which direction his career is heading following a 15-month layoff and a dull, one-sided title loss to Kamaru Usman in 2019.
Not only will the 2 welterweights be squaring off ahead of an empty arena at the UFC Apex facility as professional sports continues to ease back amid the coronavirus outbreak, but the fight is also going to be contested during a 25-foot cage (instead of 30 feet) normally wont to film the “Dana White Contender Series.”
So who will that add wrinkle favor?
For sure, it favors me. I’m not getting to run, I’m getting to get on his face the entire fight, Burns said. I think it’ll be a troublesome fight and can be a war but I do know what I even have to try to to to beat Tyron Woodley. He’s still dangerous and goes to return and swing as hard as he can, but I can not wait to beat Tyron Woodley. I’m so excited.”
While Woodley agrees the smaller cage will limit his ability to circle far away from pressure and control the terms of the bout as long as the cage wall is going to be right behind him, that does not mean he feels he’ll be at an obstacle.
I think in small cages you’re going to get more verbs. But you’ve got to take care of what you would like for, Woodley told CBS Sports. If he thinks it can win his fight, he will be sadly mistaken.”As far because the reasons for why he looked so flat against Usman, it’s still something Woodley can’t properly explain. Either way, Burns believes he has benefited from training within the same gym as Usman and talking at length about how best to defeat Woodley.I talked to Kamaru Ton and I saw Ton Tape for the fight. I’m pretty stupid like this and I make my notes,” Burns said. If you reminisce at his title defenses, he beat Robbie Lawler but never gave him a rematch. then, he only beat guys who were good at one thing.
Stephen Thompson is merely a karate guy. He knows ‘Wonderboy’ don’t need to shoot on him. He then beats up Damien Mia and he knows Mia won’t hit him. Then it had been Darren Till, who we all know won’t shoot on Tyron Woodley. But if you reminisce at Rory MacDonald, he does everything and dominated him. Jake Shields was awkward a la mode and he beat Tyron Woodley. Kamaru did an equivalent and that is it, another domination.”
Burns believes his recent evolution as a striker to go with his already world-class submission game is going to be the key difference. He showcased that growth emphatically by needing only one round to prevent Maia in March. He has great jiu-jitsu and probably world-class jiu-jitsu players but it’s becoming very difficult for him to submit to me, Woodley said. But this is often a mixed martial arts fight. check out the opposite advantages like my takedown defense, which is impeccable. If I make him work and miss, I’m getting to make him pay and his shots are going to be beginning to come from far out. His losses haven’t been to the caliber of fighters that I even have lost to. Although this may be Burns’ first opportunity to fight past the three-round limit within UFC, he’s far away from nervous at the prospect of entering deep waters.
I love the deep waters, bro. I have been there a few times in training, Burns said. I want to go five points and be ready to show everyone my petrol tank. I do know that I want to combine things up and I am getting to do this. I hit hard and that I can wrestle. I even have a gasoline tank that he can’t even imagine. that is the key, to place pressure and he’s getting to accompany the large overhand right. I just need to keep moving, mix everything up and I am getting to get a win on Saturday.”
Both believe an emphatic victory can lead them on to a Usman fight this summer, despite current talk about the champion facing everyone from Jorge Masvidal and Conor McGregor to Colby Covington and Leon Edwards. For Burns, he also made bound to clear up that there would be no issue in fighting a teammate.
Of course, if we can fight each other, of course, ”Burns said. [Usman] can be a professional and I’m wise.” He’s in the best place as a UFC champion and has made a lot of cash and that’s what I want to be. I have nothing but respect for Kamaru but he knows that if I can beat Tyrone Woodley as I like, I will have to be Kamaru next.
While this might not be the deepest fight card UFC has ever put out, there are still some names worth listening to. Rising strawweight prospect Mackenzie Dern is back when she takes on Hannah Cifers. Dern is coming off her first loss as a professional and searching to reestablish her position within the top 10 at 115 pounds. Plus, a pair of rising prospects meet at lightweight when Roosevelt Roberts takes on Brok Weaver. Let’s take a glance at the remainder of the most card.
Fight card, odds
Tyron Woodley -180 vs. Gilbert Burns +155 — Welterweight
Augusto Sakai -110 vs. Blagoy Ivanov -110 — Heavyweight
Billy Quarantillo -140 vs. Spike Carlyle +120 — 150-pound catchweight
Roosevelt Roberts -310 vs. Brok Weaver +250 — Lightweight
Mackenzie Dern -410 vs. Hannah Cifers +320 — Women’s strawweight
Expect the smaller cage to supply action and urgency from both fighters. The question is whether or not Burns has evolved enough as a striker to hold with Woodley’s pinpoint countering. The more Burns puts pressure, the more dangerous Woodley can become that he can avoid starting such a flat against Usman. Woodley’s main key is his defensive defense in the end and whether he can keep the fight steady, where he has the advantage in strategy. Although Burns has looked great lately, Woodley represents a legitimate intensify in competition and possesses the type of elite striking that has given Burns issues within the past.