Top welterweight contender Gilbert Burns almost had a fight for the title against Kamaru Usman this weekend, but it just was not his time. After a positive COVID-19 test forced ‘Durinho’ to be removed from UFC 251’s main event just one week away from the match. The BMF champion, Jorge Masvidal, stepped up on short notice and will take on the ‘Nigerian Nightmare’ instead.
Once he learned about the news and who the replacement for ‘Durinho’ was, seasoned Octagon veteran and renowned trash-talker Nate Diaz took to Twitter to express his feelings about the new pairing. Clearly, in his opinion, Masvidal against Usman was a better fight.
Real fights are better fights— Nathan Diaz (@NateDiaz209) July 5, 2020
In an interview with Combate, Burns talked about Diaz’s reaction and spoke his mind on the whole situation. Durinho expressed that Nate shouldn’t be talking the way he is, since his recent track record is not the best. Furthermore, Burns also pointed out how the Californian would not be such a draw and name in the UFC were it not for his fights against Conor McGregor.
“I think he’s a pot-smoking jerk. He talks a lot of trash, but I did the same thing he did. He started it back when he defeated Michael Johnson. He grabbed the microphone and called out Conor McGregor. When Rafael dos Anjos broke his foot, he (Diaz) asked for the fight, got it on a 10-day notice, won and changed his status. The same thing happened to me. I defeated Woodley, asked for the belt and got it.”
“First he said it wasn’t a real fight.” Gilbert continued. “He said he makes more money than both of us. He only made that money because of Conor. If I fight Conor I’ll be a millionaire, too. Then he said real fights are better. I’m more real than he is. Who is not real? I fight on short notice. It was going to be my third fight of the year. I do grappling matches, slapping matches, gi matches. We’ll see who’s more real. My jiu-jitsu is much better than his. When it comes to boxing, if I land my hands on him, I’ll doubt it he’ll be able to take it. If he wants a slap fight, I’ll slap the crap out of his face. He has this bad boy reputation, but if you put him and me in the Octagon, I’ll mess him up. He has so many losses, he should keep his mouth shut. He wins one and loses two. He has no consistency and is still talking trash. That guy kind of pissed me off.”
In his last outing, Burns (19-3) scored his sixth straight UFC win when he bested Tyron Woodley via unanimous decision. Before that, the 33-year-old also defeated some of welterweights’ most notable names, such as Gunnar Nelson and Demian Maia. Durinho’s last loss happened in July 2018, when he was knocked out by Dan Hooker.
In Nate Diaz’s (20-12) last fight, he lost via doctor stoppage TKO to now title challenger Jorge Masvidal, in November 2019. Before that, the 35-year-old picked up a unanimous decision victory over former lightweight champion Anthony Pettis.
Tomorrow, Kamaru Usman is expected to take on Jorge Masvidal at UFC 251’s main event, in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. The card will also a feature a rematch for the featherweight title, between the champion, Alexander Volkanovski, and former champ Max Holloway. A bout for the vacant bantamweight belt will also be held, with top contender Petr Yan and former featherweight title-holder Jose Aldo.