Many fighters appear to be reluctant to fight Khamzat Chimaev at the moment as the hype surrounding the undefeated star continues to build, but former welterweight champion Gilbert Burns has instead chosen to meet the challenge head-on by agreeing to go up against him at UFC 273 this coming weekend, and in a new interview he explains why.
“The way I see is the risk is very big, you know, but the reward is very big, as well,” Burns told The Underground. “A lot of people are going to be watching. Dana said – I know that opinion can change, but he said the winner of this fight might get the title shot. So yeah, for sure, it’s worth it to fight this guy.
“Very tough. Young. Hungry. But if not him, I’ll be freaking waiting for another guy to say yes, and let’s say if I beat another guy that’s not Khamzat, if the fight goes like so-so, he’s not giving me the title shot, so for me, I go all-in on this fight.
“If I win, I get another title shot. If I lose, I need to get a couple. That’s a few steps back. Then you’ve got to get another fight, but I go all in. I don’t care.”
Burns is coming off a decision win over Stephen Thompson last time out after losing out to current champion Kamaru Usman by TKO in their title encounter back in February of last year, leaving him with 7 wins from his last 8 fights.
As for Chimaev, he’s a perfect 10-0 in his career so far, including four victories in the UFC, all by finish inside the distance.