Kamaru Usman vs. Gilbert Burns off UFC 251 after Burns’ test positive for coronavirus - TheMacLife

Kamaru Usman vs. Gilbert Burns off UFC 251 after Burns’ test positive for coronavirus

One of the three title fights heading UFC 251 has been scrapped, with headliner Gilbert Burns testing positive for the coronavirus ahead of his flight to Abu Dhabi.

By Oscar Willis - 4 Jul 2020

Kamaru Usman and Gilbert Burns will not fight next Saturday night for the UFC welterweight championship.

The two men, former training partners, were set to main event UFC 251 on Yas Island, Abu Dhabi in the feature bout to kick off the UFC’s run of ‘Fight Island’ events. Per MMAJunkie, Burns tested positive during his mandatory pre-flight Covid-19 test ahead of his flight to Abu Dhabi.

Burns’ coach Greg Jones’ tests also returned positive. His training partner, Aung La N Sang, announced his own test failure yesterday.

Usman will now be pulled from a card in which his involvement was already far from simple. The champion was originally supposed to meet rival Jorge Masvidal, only for negotiations between Masvidal and the UFC to sour, leading to Burns stepping in as a replacement.

Burns had recently racked up two impressive back to back wins over Demian Maia and former champion Tyron Woodley. This was his first opportunity at a UFC world title.

While there will be no late notice replacement for Usman, UFC 251 will continue with two title fights in the form of Alexander Volkanovski vs. Max Holloway, and Petr Yan vs. Jose Aldo for the featherweight and bantamweight belts respectively.

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