Kamaru Usman will defend his belt once again at UFC 258 against former teammate Gilbert Burns. Both men trained together under coach Henri Hooft for the last ten years. Usman recently left his team when this fight was announced. Moving his camp to Denver, Colorado to train with Trevor Wittman. These guys have supposedly sparred with each other over 200 times in their careers. Meaning both men likely know each other’s strengths and weaknesses.
Kamaru Usman (17-1)
Usman only has one professional loss and it was his second professional fight against Jose Caceres. He is currently 12-0 in the UFC and has already defended his title twice. Once with a TKO over Colby Covington and most recently with a decision over Jorge Masvidal. Usman also holds UFC wins over Tyron Woodley, Rafael dos Anjos, Demain Maia, and Leon Edwards. He only has three finishes in his UFC career with the rest of his wins coming by decision.
Usman normally fights as a dominant wrestler. Taking his opponent down and keeping them there for the majority of the fight. As of late, Usman has evolved his game as a clinch fighter. He does exceptionally well with putting his opponent against the cage and controlling them with a variety of strikes. He has also evolved as a striker. We witnessed him dominate the boxing aspect of his fight with Colby Covington. He even ended the fight by breaking Covington’s nose.
Gilbert Burns (19-3)
Burns is currently on a six-fight winning streak since his last loss to Dan Hooker in 2018. He made his move to welterweight in 2019 with a decision win over Alexy Kunchenko. Burns then started to climb his way through the welterweight rankings with wins over Gunner Nelson, Demain Maia, and Tyron Woodley. Burns sits at 12-3 in the UFC and has fought at both lightweight and welterweight on multiple occasions. Burns has only been finished one time in his professional career and that was his knockout loss to Dan Hooker.
Burns is known as a great grappler and submission fighter. Although he has a 50% takedown defense, he still is very good at finding a way to get the fight to the ground when he needs to. He has eight of his 19 wins by way of submission. He has a second-degree black belt in Brazillian Jiujitsu and has won medals in ADCC World Championship, World Jiujitsu Championship, World No-Gi Championship, and World Professional Jiujitsu Cup. He has competed in these events a total of seven times winning gold four of those times.
UFC 258 Fight Card:
- Kamaru Usman vs. Gilbert Burns
- Maycee Barber vs. Alexa Grasso
- Kelvin Gastelum vs. Ian Heinisch
- Maki Pitolo vs. Julian Marquez
- Bobby Green vs. Jim Miller
- Rodolfo Viera vs. Anthony Hernandez
- Belal Muhammad vs. Dhiego Lima
- Polyana Viana vs. Mallory Martin
- Andre Ewell vs. Chris Gutierrez
Early Preliminary Card:
- Ricky Simon vs. Brian Kelleher
- Gabriel Green vs. Phillip Rowe
- Gillian Robertson vs. Miranda Maverick
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