Herbert Burns signed a contract to combat Evan Dunham lower than 48 hours earlier than his older brother Gilbert Burns demolished Tyron Woodley at UFC on ESPN 9. Days after that flawless win, he’s impressed by “Durinho’s” efficiency forward of Saturday evening’s UFC 250 in Las Vegas.
Burns, a featherweight, and Dunham, a light-weight, will meet within the center for a 15-pound catchweight bout on June 6. The Brazilian expertise admits he was a bit “stunned” when the UFC got here up with the supply, however beloved the truth that he’s dealing with such a veteran in his second UFC look.
“He’s extraordinarily skilled, he’s within the UFC since 2009 and has 19 fights within the UFC,” Burns informed MMA Preventing. “I didn’t even prepare MMA in 2009, I wasn’t even a black belt in jiu-jitsu, and he was already within the UFC. However I see many holes in his sport. He wasn’t in my radar as a result of he wasn’t very lively, he retired in 2018 and he’s a light-weight, so I by no means imagined myself preventing him.”
Dunham walked away type the game after dropping to Francisco Trinaldo in Brazil, however determined to return again earlier this yr. He was initially booked to satisfy Burns’ teammate Michael Johnson in April, however the combat fell via. Although Burns-Dunham can be contested at 150 kilos, Burns hopes it propels him into the highest 15 of the featherweight record.
“I wish to enter the featherweight rating,” Burns mentioned. “I feel this win may get me nearer to and even within the rating if I win like my final combat. You by no means know. I’m positive I’ll go there and placed on a fantastic work.”
The ONE Championship veteran is using a four-fight ending streak, three of these within the opening spherical, and appears as much as his brother’s success as as welterweight as “inspiration.”
“He confirmed how full he’s on this combat,” Herbert mentioned of Gilbert’s one-sided choice victory over Woodley. “He has cardio, jiu-jitsu, hanging and wrestling, and he’s able to develop into the following welterweight champion. That conjures up and motivates me to go there and present that Gilbert Burns is just not the one one, that Herbert Burns and the entire Burns household is right here to make noise in 2020.”
The UFC has had a number of set of iconic household duos all through its historical past, however Frank Shamrock and Ken Shamrock had been the one ones to win UFC gold. “The Blaze” needs to take it up a notch, placing the Burns title within the historical past books as the primary brothers to carry UFC belts concurrently.
When “Durinho” beat Alexey Kunchenko in his return to welterweight in Uruguay, he predicted he and his brother would win UFC titles. Lower than a yr later, the youthful Burns says “we will obtain that.”
“It’s very life like,” Herbert mentioned. “I feel we will be the primary brothers to win UFC titles concurrently. That’s in my plans, and that’s in his plans as properly. And he’s near it. I feel his subsequent combat must be for the belt as a result of Leon Edwards is in another country and may’t get in, Colby (Covington) simply misplaced, and Kamaru (Usman) needs to combat quickly — and Gilbert is on the market.”
“I feel it’s potential, however it’s in UFC’s fingers,” he continued. “However I’ve to do my work first. The mountain is excessive and I wish to take stable steps on my technique to the highest. My first step was on the Contender Sequence and it was stable. My second step was a fantastic efficiency towards Nate Landwehr, one other stable step, and that’s what I wish to maintain doing. I can’t management the rankings or something like that, however I’ve the abilities to combat the highest of the division.”
Gilbert Burns agrees.
“That’s the state of affairs I see,” the welterweight contender mentioned. “My brother may be very expert, his jiu-jitsu is manner slicker than mine. He has an extended attain for a featherweight, he’s enormous for the division, and hits exhausting. He was all the time extra expert than me, I used to be the exhausting employee, however he noticed the results of my exhausting work, that woke him as much as work more durable, too.
“I feel he has what it takes to develop into champion. He’s sensible, he’s proficient. I don’t know what occurs on combat day that this child reveals up and shines [laughs]. He’ll be champion quickly. This combat will wake lots of people up on him.”
Burns signed with the UFC after tapping Darrick Minner on Dana White’s Contender Sequence in Aug. 2019, after which knocked out Landwehr in his UFC debut in January. In line with Burns, “nothing modifications” as he goes from a prospect to a veteran in Dunham.
“I received to the UFC and confirmed that I’m not right here to be within the combine, I’m right here to go to the highest,” Burns mentioned. “Evan Dunham may be very skilled, it’s going to be a wonderful check. He has good boxing, good jiu-jitsu, can take a punch and has a warrior spirit that by no means offers up, so it’s going to be a fantastic check for my evolution as an athlete. I’m going there for the kill.”
And the way does he get to “kill” Dunham on the UFC Apex in Las Vegas?
“I feel I’m superior in all areas of the combat, however my jiu-jitsu is manner superior than his,” Burns mentioned. “He has solely been submitted as soon as, by (Donald) Cerrone. He’s a black belt in jiu-jitsu, has a background is within the grappling space, however I see myself submitting him.”
“Durinho” has skilled with Dunham previously, again when he lived in Las Vegas and skilled with former UFC star Vitor Belfort, and predicts a stoppage victory for his youthful brother.
“(Dunham) may be very powerful, however he likes to grapple,” Gilbert Burns mentioned. “He received’t run away from it although he is aware of my brother is nice on the bottom, he’ll grapple, so I see my brother submitting him, possibly within the first or second spherical. My brother additionally has good kicks to the physique, entrance kicks to the physique. If a type of kicks land on Evan Dunham — he has been knocked out with a kick to the physique earlier than —, it may very well be over. I see it going each methods.”