In a recent interview with ESPN’s Brett Okamoto, No. 2 Gilbert Burns said there is a “clear path” for the UFC to put himself and Masvidal together. “Gamebred” is ranked No. 6 at 170 pounds.
And for Burns, everyone ranked above Masvidal is either booked, a friend, someone he beat or seemingly waiting for a title fight. Masvidal is also likely the biggest star in the division.
Gamebred has said on multiple occasions he hopes to return in December 2021 or early 2022, and he’s ready to fight top contenders to get himself back to a title fight.
“Durinho” is coming off a victory over No. 5-ranked Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson in July 2021, rebounding from his title fight loss to Kamaru Usman earlier this year. He’s also on the hunt for a rematch with “The Nigerian Nightmare,” and taking out the “BMF” would be another step in that direction.
“I just see a clear path last week, Masvidal saying he wants to fight,” Burns said via Middle Easy. “He wants to fight the best in the UFC and bro, I’m right here. It’s different because I don’t like Leon Edwards but on the other hand I like Masvidal. I have tremendous respect for the guy. Freakin’ BMF, those crazy street fights back in the day, over 50 fights. Yeah, I wanna fight Masvidal. I think that’s a fight that can happen right now. We’re both in South Florida, do it in Miami. If you wanna put the BMF on the line, you put it. But that’s the number one fight that I want right now.”
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Burns Slammed Leon Edwards, Call Him a ‘Coward’
From a rankings standpoint, a battle between Burns and No. 3 Leon Edwards could make sense. However, “Rocky,” and many others in the MMA community, believe he’s done enough to earn a title shot. The Englishman hopes to fight the winner of the UFC 268 170-pound title fight between Usman and Colby Covington.
Well, Durinho is not a fan of Edwards waiting for a championship opportunity.
“The only guy that [Edwards] beat in the top 10 was my guy, [Vicente] Luque, and that s*** was 1999,” Burns said. “I don’t even know how long ago that was. And after that, he got the eye poke with Belal [Muhammad]. And then Nate Diaz, the end wasn’t the end to make a freakin’ statement. But I got it, I got it. I don’t like the guy, I’m gonna fight him but I don’t think right now.”
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Daniel Cormier Defended Edwards Choice to Wait for Title Fight
Former two-division UFC championship, Daniel Cormier, who now works as an analyst for ESPN and the UFC, recently defended Edwards. During a recent episode of his ESPN show “DC & RC,” Cormier said Rocky shouldn’t “waste” his time fighting another contender.
“Why in the world should Leon Edwards now wanna look back to you guys?” Cormer said via Sportskeeda. “And I’m saying ‘you guys’ because Gilbert Burns, too. Gilbert Burns is guilty of this. (Masvidal and Burns) did not want to talk about Leon Edwards at all when they were the ones on the shortlist of a championship fight. Now, Leon is in that position and they wanna call him out. No, Leon. ‘Rocky’ get the title shot that you so justly deserve. Don’t waste your time.”