Daniel Cormier thinks size and strength could be an issue for Gilbert Burns against Khamzat Chimaev.
Burns is set to give Chimaev the toughest test of his career at UFC 273 in a very intriguing matchup. Chimaev is just 10-0 as a pro and 4-0 in the UFC and has only been hit once, but many expect Burns to give him a tough test. Yet, Cormier, thinks Chimaev will be much bigger than Burns and that could be a problem for the Brazilian.
“Khamzat is big. He’s got fantastic striking with tremendous power. He’s got unbelievable wrestling, and obviously, he has good grappling,” Cormier said on his YouTube channel. “But to me, it’s the smothering top pressure of Khamzat Chimaev that causes these guys so many issues – and he’s long and he’s big. How does Gilbert Burns, a Brazilian jiu-jitsu world champion and black belt, handle a heavy guy like that on top?
“Normally, when you get this type of matchup, the wrestler will dominate the grappler because Gilbert needs to create a lot of action in order to free himself of the pressure from Khamzat Chimaev,” Cormier said. “The wrestling base usually will kill that. … We, as wrestlers, understand smothering and stopping the movement of jiu-jitsu players.”
Despite that fact, Daniel Cormier thinks Khamzat Chimaev’s size will be a difference he says he doesn’t think it will be a dominant performance as many think. Instead, he thinks Burns does pose a lot of problems for the Swede and that is why he is eager for the bout.
“Would I bet that he’s going to dominate him in that way? No,” Cormier said. “I think going to get challenged in ways that we have not seen him get challenged today or to this point. I think he’s going to get challenged, but do I think he’s going to win? I think the size difference will be the biggest issue for Burns to overcome in this matchup. So I will say, I think Khamzat wins the fight, but I don’t know if he wins the fight in as dominant of fashion as he has won so many.”