Despite getting off to a strong start against welterweight champion Kamaru Usman at UFC 258 on Saturday night, Gilbert Burns ultimately lost by TKO and as the dust settles on the fight, he’s been reflecting on the mistakes he believes cost him the chance to win the title.
“I got overexcited. I went (like) my guy, Cody Garbrandt crazy as soon as I hurt him,” Burns said backstage after the fight. “That’s the second time. I think I made the same mistake when I fought Dan Hooker. To become a champion, I cannot make those mistakes.
“I know I can hit any one of these guys, but in order to become a champion, I have to be disciplined. I went in like my guy. I have so much respect for my guy Cody Garbrandt, (but) I just went the same way. As soon as I saw he was hurt, forget about the strategy. I just went for the kill.
“(Usman) stayed disciplined. He’s not quick. He doesn’t hit that hard. But he’s friggin’ disciplined, that’s why he’s the champion. And for me, it was the opposite. I got overexcited, loaded up on my punches, and that was my mistake.”
“I wanted to finish him, and that’s natural for me, but I should be a little bit more relaxed,” Burns continued. “Keeping that strategy and keep doing what I know how to do,” he said. “I was loading up too much. If I keep moving my head like I was doing, if I was light on my feet, he doesn’t land (that jab) on me. I stopped moving, stopped being light on my feet, and I paid the price.”