Gunnar Nelson and Gilbert Burns faced each other in a Lightweight clash today (Sat., Sept. 28, 2019) at UFC Fight Night 160 inside Royal Arena in Copenhagen, Denmark, only on ESPN+. Following a back-and-forth fight, Burns was awarded the victor.
Burns opened with a pair of half-speed low kicks. Nelson landed a kick and attempted a takedown to no success. Good low kick landed for the Icelandic athlete. Burns scored with a calf kick, and a bruise appeared on Nelson’s calf less than 90 seconds into the fight. Another low kick from Burns landed. Neither man’s punches were landing well, but Burns’ low kicks were connecting at a good clip. Quick jab scored for Nelson, then a side kick. Nelson jumped into a left hook, but it was blocked and countered by a nice uppercut. Against the fence, Burns secured double underhooks and attempted a trip, but he wound up on his back. From his back, Burns spun for a leg lock, but the round was already nearly over.
Nelson moved around the outside to start the second, while Burns still looked to stalk with heavy low kicks and the occasional cross-hook. Nelson landed a side kick and good one-two combination. Low kick and left hook connected for Burns. Nelson next attacked with a combination, trying to follow up with a clinch takedown. It was not successful, but Nelson controlled his foe along the fence for a good amount of time. A big right hand glanced off the head of Nelson, prompting another takedown attempt. Yet another takedown attempt came from Nelson, but he ate a back elbow and was briefly tossed for his effort. Then, Burns landed a nice jump knee. Nelson dove into a takedown attempt, but Burns countered with an anaconda choke. He wasn’t able to finish the submission, but he finished the second doing damage from top position.
Burns began the third throwing kicks. Nelson countered Burns’ aggression with a takedown attempt, which once again landed him in the clinch, pressing Burns along the fence. Burns scored with a good overhand from within the clinch. The action really stalled out along the fence, as Nelson mostly held while Burns landed the occasional small shot. Back in the center, Nelson landed a nice body shot but ate a right hand. Burns with a knee to the mid-section and calf kick. Nelson’s lead leg started to bother him, prompting yet another push to the clinch from Nelson. As Nelson looked to release the clinch, Burns drove into a powerful double leg takedown, lifting and slamming his opponent. He was unable to control top position for long, but it was definitely a strong message in a fairly uneventful round.
This bout proved to be a chess match. Ultimately, Burns’ dedication to the calf kick and physicality in wrestling exchanges seemed to be the deciding factor. In addition, Burns did a better job of creating offense from within the clinch and during other close quarters exchanges, which helped him pull away with the victory.
Result: Gilbert Burns defeats Gunnar Nelson via unanimous decision (29-28, 29-28, 29-28)
For complete UFC Fight Night 160: “Hermansson vs. Cannonier” results and play-by-play, click HERE!