UFC welterweight contender Gilbert Burns is planning a sizable heist on April 8.
If all goes to plan for one-time welterweight title challenger Gilbert Burns, there’ll be multiple ‘thefts’ at UFC 287.
At the April 8 pay-per-view, set for the Miami-Dade Arena, Burns will look to keep his momentum rolling after opening his account for the year this past January in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Having quickly dispatched Neil Magny to return to winning ways at UFC 283, “Durinho” will hope to repeat that feat in a blockbuster showdown against MMA superstar Jorge Masvidal.
The pair are set to feature in the UFC 287 co-main event, setting the stage for the highly anticipated middleweight championship rematch between Alex Pereira and Israel Adesanya in the headliner.
While Burns enjoyed a true home fight experience in Brazil earlier this year, he’s set for a a similar scenario next month, with the Brazilian training out of and living in Florida.
Despite that, the #5-ranked welterweight knows Miami will still mark enemy soil come April 8 given who he’ll be sharing the cage with.
But while he’ll be going head-to-head with the city’s self-professed king, Burns is confident of ‘stealing’ the fans on fight night.
“Second home. Second pay-per-view at home. First one in Rio in Brazil, now here in Miami,” Burns told MMA Junkie’s Danny Segura. “It’s still gonna be hostile territory. A lot of Cubans over there I think. He (Masvidal) grew up here, born and raised here. I think I’m gonna get booed a little bit. But as the fight is going, I might steal the crowd back.”
And getting the crowd to sway from Miami’s own Masvidal isn’t the only heist Burns has in mind…
Gilbert Burns “100%” Believes He Can Prevent Colby Covington Title Shot
During the same interview, Burns discussed the current welterweight title picture and UFC President Dana White’s insistence that former interim champion Colby Covington is next in line for a shot at Leon Edwards.
After joining a host of fighters, fans, and pundits in calling out the decision, Burns outlined his plans to change the promotional brass’ minds with a “spectacular” display at UFC 287.
“I think Colby’s smart, but I don’t know why the UFC’s giving an opportunity to the guy. It is what it is. I hope it doesn’t happen,” Burns noted. “And, I have the opportunity April 8 to make doubt on everyone’s mind, and go out there and finish this guy spectacularly.
“I hope Leon is there, hope Dana is there, hope Colby is there, and put a clinic against this guy and try to get a title shot,” Burns continued. “100 percent (I can change White and UFC’s minds). I can steal the show. I can put doubt on anyone’s mind. It all depends on the performance. If I go out there, dominate this guy… what Colby didn’t do in his last fight… If I go out there and do it in one or two, that has a lot to say.”
While Covington has fallen short of the undisputed throne on two separate occasions, Burns has so far made one failed bid for the gold.
Since a TKO loss to Kamaru Usman in 2021, “Durinho” has gone 2-1, defeating Stephen Thompson and Magny, but suffering a close decision loss to Khamzat Chimaev in their Fight of the Year contender last year.
Should the Brazilian add the name of Masvidal to his record’s win column, it stands to reason that he’ll join Belal Muhammad in the group of contenders believing they’re more deserving than “Chaos.”