The emotional embrace between Kamaru Usman and Gilbert Burns after their UFC 258 war


Kamaru Usman finished Gilbert Burns via KO/TKO in the main event at UFC 258. Kamaru Usman was looking to defend his welterweight title against Gilbert Burns who had his first shot at the title in his six years at the UFC.Kamaru Usman and Gilbert Burns embraced in a deep show of friendship and respect right after the fight. Having been teammates for a long time in Sanford MMA, Florida, the title fight had a lot of emotional significance for both Usman and Burns. Burns broke down immediately after the fight was stopped in the third round as Kamaru Usman went southpaw to drop Gilbert Burns with a right jab that landed flush and followed it up with vicious ground and pound. Daniel Cormier empathized with Burns as he acknowledged the impact that a loss of such caliber can have on a fighter.Kamaru Usman stated in his post-fight interview that no credit should be taken away from what Gilbert Burns has done for the welterweight division but he leaves all friendship outside the Octagon.Kamaru Usman and Gilbert Burns go back a long wayKamaru Usman and Gilbert Burns have been teammates for almost 10 years. The two first met in 2012 while training with the now-defunct Blackzilians. After its shutdown, both Usman and Burns moved to Sanford MMA in Florida.Kamaru Usman moved to ONX sports in 2020 to train under coach Trevor Wittman in preparation for the fight against Gilbert Burns. After his third successful title defense, Kamaru Usman continues to be the undisputed king of the welterweights.
Published 14 Feb 2021, 12:17 IST

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Max Holloway reacts to Kamaru Usman’s phenomenal victory over Gilbert Burns at UFC 258


Former UFC featherweight champion Max Holloway has reacted to Kamaru Usman’s massive third-round knockout victory over Gilbert Burns in the main event of UFC 258.Holloway acknowledged that the welterweight champion brought his A-game to the fight and claimed that Usman has earned his respect with the incredible performance. The MMA community wanted to know if Burns would be the man who’d finally bring Usman’s domination inside the octagon to an end.However, it turned out that Usman truly is the ‘Nigerian Nightmare’ who smashed Burns’ dream of becoming champion.Kamaru Usman shows Gilbert Burns why he is the king of welterweightsThere was no customary touching of gloves between the ex-teammates before the fight and the tension in the air was palpable. Kamaru Usman as well as the viewers were in for an early surprise as Burns connected with a devastating right hook that rocked the champ.Usman got clipped right behind the ear and was down on one knee before managing to foil a flying knee attempt by Burns and transitioning into a takedown. Although Usman was ahead in terms of the total number of strikes at the end of the first round, Burns had clearly drawn first blood.It was in the second round that the champ truly started going to work. Usman used his five-inch reach advantage well, staying out of range and stinging Burns with hard jabs connecting flush on the chin. Usman had Burns clearly reeling from the jabs as he scored two knockdowns in the second round with a simple one-two combination.Burns was quickly fading and Usman realized that. The champion put his foot on the gas early in the round and managed to connect flush on the chin with a hard right-hand shot that sent Burns crashing down on the canvas.Kamaru Usman followed it up with some vicious ground and pound before Herb Dean stepped in to save Burns from further damage.
Published 14 Feb 2021, 12:09 IST

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Leon Edwards vs. Khamzat Chimaev is off again due to ‘lingering Covid-19 symptoms’


Khamzat Chimaev is out of the long-awaited welterweight bout against Leon Edwards at UFC Fight Night 187 on March 13 due to COVID-19.It is the third time that Chimaev versus Edwards needs to be put on hold. Khamzat Chimaev had withdrawn from the fight previously in 2020 because of the disease, as did Edwards. The Swedish-Russian MMA sensation is suffering from lingering physical effects caused by the virus.ESPN’s Brett Okamoto reported that UFC president Dana White told him on Thursday that Khamzat Chimaev is still facing difficulties to return to his best shape after having a severe case of COVID-19.The two were initially scheduled to fight on December 19, but Edwards had to be removed after contracting a rigorous infection related to the virus. It was reported at the time that Edwards lost twelve pounds due to the severity of his case.Per sources, Leon Edwards’ (@Leon_edwardsmma) case of Covid-19 was pretty severe. He couldn’t train at all, and he lost 12 pounds in four days. He’s in the process of recovering at home. Wishing him a speedy and full recovery.— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) December 1, 2020The UFC rebooked the fight to January 20. However, this time it was Khamzat Chimaev who had to withdraw after testing positive to COVID-19. Like Edwards, Khamzat Chimaev also experienced a difficult battle against the virus and has not yet fully recovered.According to White, the UFC will have to drop the fight until Khamzat Chimaev recovers his form completely. Edwards is not expected to face a different opponent, with the fight likely to be moved to a new date.What is Khamzat Chimaev’s condition after a severe case of COVID-19?Khamzat Chimaev was seen destroying heavy bags in the first week of February in a video displaying his training ahead of the now-cancelled fight with Leon Edwards.

In addition to the footage posted by MMA Fighting, the UFC welterweight rising star also declared that he had completely recovered from the disease:”Now I’m back to a hundred percent. My lungs are good. We work hard day after day. I’ve always worked hard, but we have never trained for five rounds before. Now I train extra hard with longer sessions. I want to smash him [Leon Edwards], brother. I want to destroy him,” Khamzat Chimaev said.The fight with Edwards was seen as a possible title eliminator to challenge the winner between current champion Kamaru Usman and challenger Gilbert Burns.Khamzat Chimaev took the UFC by storm after winning his first three fights in promotion in an interval of only two months – all of them on UFC Fight Island in Abu Dhabi.
Published 12 Feb 2021, 05:57 IST

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