LAS VEGAS – Gilbert Burns plans to learn from his mistakes.
The challenger to the UFC welterweight title at UFC 258, Burns (19-4 MMA, 12-4 UFC) came up short when he was defeated by champion Kamaru Usman by TKO in Round 3 of his headliner.
The finish was two rounds away from Burns’ best offense of the fight when he stunned Usman (18-1 MMA, 13-0 UFC) in the first 35 seconds. That’s when Burns made a key mistake with his estimation. With the champion reeling, Burns took a page from the book of his friend and former UFC bantamweight champion, Cody Garbrandt. He got too jealous and missed his chance.
“It wasn’t exactly what I wanted it to be,” Burns told reporters, including MMA Junkie, at a post-fight news conference. “I think I got too excited. I went crazy with my boy Cody Garbrandt as soon as I hurt him. That was the second time. I think I made the same mistake when I fought Dan Hooker. I got too excited.
“… To be a champion, I have to be disciplined. I have to be disciplined. I have a lot of respect for my boy Cody Garbrandt. I just went the same way. As soon as I saw that I was hurt, (I forgot) the strategy. I went to kill. To be a champion, I can’t make those mistakes. “
Even though their gloves were not touched before the start of Saturday’s fight, Burns has no ill will toward his former teammate Usman. In fact, Burns hopes his Sanford MMA team can get back to normal after the camp split due to the showdown.
“This is not tennis. This is not football. This is a fight, ”Burns said. “I have a lot of respect for the boy. I will never say anything bad about him. I know his daughter, his whole family. We exchanged a couple of good things. When I go to the fight, I don’t see (a) face. I’m just trying to finish.
“… Kamaru left the team. I think they need to do that. I don’t think our relationship is over yet or the relationship is over. There are a couple of guys who are still feeling a bit. I hope he, (coach) Henry (Hooft) and the coaches get things done together, all these guys. I don’t want drama. I want nothing “.
Burns hopes to begin the path to his second UFC title shot as soon as possible. With some damage to his face at the post-fight press conference, Burns will go home and heal. However, as soon as he’s ready to return, he will, and will also be inspired by a former UFC welterweight champion.
“The way I see it now, I just want to do like Robbie Lawler,” Burns said. “He was the only guy, if I’m not mistaken, (who) lost to Johnny Hendricks and then came back in a couple of weeks, fought again and then became champion. That is exactly what I want to do.
“… As soon as I recover, let’s say two or three weeks, Dana, I’ll call you. You already know. I have a lot of work to do. I’m going to watch the fight right now a couple of times. I’m going to take my notes. The work doesn’t stop. “
UFC 258 took place Saturday at UFC Apex in Las Vegas. The main card aired on ESPN + pay-per-view after the preliminaries on ESPN / ESPN +.