“Ariel Freaking Lying Again”- Gilbert Burns and Former ESPN Analyst Ariel Helwani go at Each Other’s Throats on Twitter

Published 10/14/2021, 8:38 AM EDT
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – FEBRUARY 10: Gilbert Burns speaks to the media during the UFC 258 Media Day at UFC APEX on February 10, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)


UFC welterweight Gilbert Burns and Journalist Ariel Helwani had a back and forth on Twitter and took jabs at each other over Leon Edwards.

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Leon Edwards, who will face Jorge Masvidal at UFC 269, recently was on The MMA Hour, talking to Helwani about his upcoming fight. Ariel mentioned Gilbert Burns’s name during the conversation, who had called Edwards a coward for ducking Masvidal.

After seeing his name mentioned on the show, Gilbert was quick to send out a tweet. He mentioned Ariel’s name and took a dig at him for saying Leon has fought everybody.

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Gilbert in the tweet said, Ariel Freaking lying again = Leon, you fought everybody… No, that’s wrong. Facts are, he said, no to fight Colby. He said no to fight me. He said no to Wonderboy. No, for the rematch with Belal. Why do you think they took him out of the rankings? Now he fights everybody?”

Gilbert also talked about when UFC removed Edwards from the welterweight rankings because of inactivity throughout 2020. Ariel was quick to answer back to the tweet from Burns.

Ariel, in his reply, said, “Also, if we are worried about being factual, let’s be factual. They took him out of the rankings because they were forcing Khamzat on him. And then he said yes. And then he said yes again. And again. What about when he asked to fight you last year? What happened then?”

Burns didn’t hold back after Ariel’s reply and posted videos on Twitter which, according to him, prove Leon ducked him.

After his win against Rafael dos Anjos, Leon Edwards was the favorite to challenge Kamaru Usman for the title, but due to travel restrictions in the UK, he could not come to America. Burns beat Woodley during that time, and many, including Ariel, thought that Burns and Edwards should fight in a title-eliminator. That didn’t happen, and Burns ended up facing Usman for the title.

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What’s next for Leon Edwards and Gilbert Burns

Leon Edwards is ready to take on long-time rival Jorge Masvidal at UFC 269 on December 11, 2021. The rivalry between the two dates back to 2019, when both fighters got into a brawl backstage. The brawl took place at the O2 arena in London, where both Jorge and Leon fought on the same card.

Ever since then, both of them have shared the desire to fight each other in the octagon. After many years of trying, and one fighter or the other backing out, the rivals will finally meet at UFC 269. In the interview with The MMA Hour, Leon said, “This is not just a fight, this is a war and I’m coming for him.”

Leon in the interview also mentioned that if he beats Masvidal on December 11, and Kamaru wins his fight against Colby Covington at UFC 268, he will be the next one to get a title shot.

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In the interview, he also took a dig at Burns. When asked about what he had to say to people like Gilbert, Leon said, “He’s an ugly bast**d is what I’ll say to him. Literally everything you (Burns) post on social media talking s**t. You put his name like, I’ll fight anybody, but well, he’s doing it just to keep his name relevant.”

As for Gilbert Burns, his last fight was against Stephen ‘Wonderboy‘ Thompson at UFC 264. He won the fight via a unanimous decision. He recently tweeted that he would be ready to move up to middleweight to fight Sean Strickland on short notice at UFC 268 on November 6. Strickland was to go up against former middleweight champion Luke Rockhold, but he withdrew because of a herniated disc.

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There are no fights in the welterweight division that would make sense for Burns to take.

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What do you think about the whole back and forth? Let us know in the comments!

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Arunaditya Aima

85 articles

Arunaditya is a UFC writer at EssentiallySports. Having completed his Post Graduate Diploma in Multimedia Journalism from IIJNM, Arunaditya aspires to be an important voice in the world of MMA and interview the likes of Jon Jones, Conor McGregor, Amanda Nunes, and other such superstars of the sport. He has followed the sport for over a decade and is an ardent fan of Georges St-Pierre, who he believes is the greatest of all time.

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