The fight caught mainstream attention for all the wrong reasons. A few days before the bout, Costa admitted that he wouldn't make the middleweight limit (185 pounds). The fight was then moved to a catchweight of 195 pounds. However, this also seemed too tough a task for the Brazilian, leading the UFC to schedule the contest in the light heavyweight division. As a result, 20% of Costa's purse was given to Vettori.
Now, 'The Italian Dream' claims that there was a chance that Costa would back out of the bout. At the post-event presser, Vettori said that 'The Eraser' hinted at canceling the fight if a significant portion of his purse was at stake.
"...The thing is he was playing these kind of games with the purse too, he was like, 'if you take too much of my purse, I'm out of the fight,' so he wanted to fight at a higher weight with me not taking that much of his purse, too. That's how f**king crazy it was. He was like, 'if you take too much of my purse, I'm out! If you don't accept the fight at this weight, I'm out!' So I pretty much accepted everything for this fight to make it happen... I'm walking away with a good purse tonight."
Marvin Vettori also claimed that Paulo Costa was in fantastic shape despite signaling his intentions of backing out.
"It kind of looked like he wasn't ready," said Marvin Vettori. "I had people all the time telling me, he wants out of the fight, he doesn't want to be here. I mean, you saw the performance. He came game. Like, he wasn't out of shape or nothing... they were telling me that he was making videos, talking in Portugese that we were trying to get out of the fight."
Watch Marvin Vettori's full post-fight press conference here:
Paulo Costa expressed dissatisfaction with the decision loss against Marvin Vettori; felt he won three rounds
While speaking to Megan Olivi after the fight, Paulo Costa was seemingly upset with the judges' decision.
'The Eraser' believed he had won three out of five rounds against Marvin Vettori.
While giving credit to Marvin Vettori for putting on an excellent performance, Costa said he didn't agree with the judges' decision. 'The Eraser' claimed that he 'clearly won the third, fourth and fifth rounds.'
Watch his full interview below: