Usman v Burns odds
UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman can break the record for the most wins in the division’s history when he faces Gilbert Burns at the UFC Apex on Saturday night.
After winning The Ultimate Fighter 21 back in 2015, Usman has won all 12 of his UFC fights on the way to becoming one of the promotion’s most dominant champions.
He thoroughly outclassed former champ Tyron Woodley – one of the best welterweights ever – to take the title in March 2019 and has since successfully defended it against arch-rival Colby Covington and Jorge Masvidal.
The next test for ‘The Nigerian Nightmare’ is Burns, who has won his last six fights to emerge as the division’s top contender.
A former team-mate of Usman’s with the Blackzilians, Burns also beat Woodley on points last May in his most impressive performance to date.
The three-time Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu world champion is the underdog for Saturday night, while Usman is to successfully defend his belt once again.
Usman v Burns prediction
Burns’ all-round game means he could be the biggest challenge that Usman has faced in the UFC.
The Brazilian is one of the best grapplers in the welterweight division and is dangerous on the feet, too, with six career knockouts, including one two fights back against Demian Maia in March 2020.
Usman’s elite wrestling means his default plan is to maul his opponents and grind them down gradually, but he must be very careful when engaging Burns in the clinch given the latter’s prowess on the mat.
And although the champion proved he can rely upon his striking in wins over Woodley and Covington, he’s by no means a knockout artist and would be foolish to go searching for an early finish against Burns.
Ultimately, this fight will likely come down to Usman’s physical strength, his defence, and his fight IQ.
Over the course of his 12-fight winning streak, the Nigerian-American has found ways to beat a wide range of opponents with various styles.
He’s also barely been hit in the UFC, and in his win over Covington he proved that he’s got the chin to take a shot when his defence fails.
Burns will make this a tough fight for the champion, but Usman should manage to grind him down – as he has against so many fighters in the past – and secure the win by decision.
Usman to win by decision
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