Gilbert Burns brought in kickboxer and Bellator fighter, Raymond Daniels to help him prepare for Stephen Thompson.
In the co-main event of UFC 264, Burns is looking to get back into the win column after suffering a TKO loss to Kamaru Usman for the belt at UFC 258. This fight against Thompson is a crucial one for the Brazilian and he’s taking all the stops to properly prepare.
Thompson has a unique karate style and Burns knows it’s hard to prepare for that. Yet, he believes after training with Daniels he feels much more prepared for the fight on July 10 in Las Vegas.
“He has good movement, great footwork, a good poker face,” Burns said to the South China Morning Post. “He does that very good, trying to be very friendly, but I know he likes to frustrate people, make the guys miss, and be very comfortable. I brought a couple of karate guys and one of the guys especially was Raymond Daniels. He was here for two weeks, and he’s coming back next week, and I learned so much from these guys, little things that I wasn’t paying attention to.
“I always loved boxing and kickboxing, for sure wrestling and grappling, but I never paid too much attention to my footwork and for this camp, I had to,” Burns continued. “I’m learning so much, and I think it’s not even about Stephen Thompson so much. It’s about me growing as an athlete, to get better in every single aspect in a couple of things that I never thought would make a difference in my game is making a lot of difference.”
If Gilbert Burns defeats Stephen Thompson at UFC 264 it’s likely he won’t get a title shot due to the fact he just fought Usman. Yet, he still could fight someone ranked in the top-five and be a couple of wins away from a title shot.