Gilbert “Durinho” Burns is one of the world’s best Brazilian Jiu Jitsu competitors. He’s a three time World Champion, who has had success in both gi and no-gi, defeating some of the biggest names in the sport, including Kron Gracie and Lucas Lepri. In mid-2011 he joined Vitor Belfort’s team, as Vitor’s primary Jiu Jitsu coach, and as a training partner. This move will prove to be beneficial for both sides, as anyone can gain from Gilbert’s Jiu Jitsu game, and anyone can gain from Vitor’s striking game. Gilbert knew he wanted to break into MMA, and as a highly decorated BJJ athlete, he also knew that finding fights would be tough. Getting on a team like Vitor’s was a perfect fit, at least for MMA. Joining Vitor’s team brought on a split from Burns’ long time BJJ team, ATOS. It was an amicable split, as Ramon Lemos, Gilbert’s BJJ coach, was also Anderson Silva’s BJJ coach. Vitor was set to fight Anderson, so Gilbert thought it best for everyone if he parted ways with ATOS.
Burns’ first MMA fight was July 30th, 2011, against Jamie Sanchez, a fight Durinho won via armbar in the second round. His second fight was on January 30th, 2012, against Jose Salgado. Burns won that fight via rear naked choke in the first round. The same day, it was announced that Burns would be Vitor Belfort’s BJJ coach for The Ulitmate Fighter – Brazil. His time on the show would prove as a training camp for his most recent fight, held on June 15th, 2012. Burns advanced his MMA record to 3-0 with three submission finishes while winning in the 1st round via arm lock. How many more fights will Burns need to win before the UFC brings him in? His current skillset is similar to that of Demian Maia when Maia broke into the UFC, and Demian’s gone on to have a pretty good UFC career thus far, even challenging for the UFC Middleweight title at UFC 112.
Burns would certainly add a dimension to the UFC’s Welterweight division, where he would immediately be the best Jiu Jitsu-based fighter.