Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) welterweight champion Tyron Woodley spent the last year dwelling on his UFC 235 loss to Kamaru Usman. In addition, “The Chosen One” has been listening to mixed martial arts (MMA) fans (and fighters) making fun of his corny rap videos.
No better way to shut everyone up than by starching Gilbert Burns.
That’s probably why longtime welterweight contender Stephen Thompson, who went 10 rounds with the former champ in a pair of 170-pound title fights, is picking Woodley to win the upcoming UFC Fight Night main event on May 30, an event that is still finalizing its location.
“I think it’s a better fight for Tyron, for sure,” Thompson told MMA Crazy. “I think Tyron’s got the better striking, I think he’s got the heavier hands. I think Tyron’s gonna go out there and piece him up, because the guy is re-motivated. I saw him during his last camp and I actually chatted with him and we did an Instagram Live together and the guy is motivated. That’s a guy I would not want to stand up against in this next up-and-coming fight.”
Prior to surrendering his strap to Usman, Woodley (19-4-1) put together a torrid 8-1-1 streak that included finishes over Robbie Lawler and Darren Till, just to name a few. Burns has been no slouch himself, rattling off five straight wins, including his technical knockout victory over Demian Maia last March.
The winner is expected to top a very short list of welterweight title contenders.
As for Thompson, he’s back in the win column after out-striking Vicente Luque at UFC 244 last November in New York. The 37 year-old “Wonderboy” is still ranked in the division Top 5 and could see either Woodley or Burns somewhere in the near future, depending on how that fight shakes out.