Paulo Costa suffered the only defeat of his MMA career so far at UFC 253 when he was decimated by Israel Adesanya in an extremely one-sided title fight. Before that, Paulo Costa was regarded as the most dangerous contender for Israel Adesanya, but The Last Stylebender proved that to be untrue and seemingly picked up the easiest victory of his UFC run so far.
While Paulo Costa is naturally disappointed with the defeat, that isn't what's angering him. According to his manager Wallid Ismail, Israel Adesanya's post-fight antics infuriated Paulo Costa so much that he's delayed a planned move up to Light Heavyweight. Speaking to MMA Fighting, he said:
“[Israel] Adesanya is his focus,” Ismail said. “He was thinking about moving up in weight but won’t anymore because he wants to get Adesanya, and the UFC owes him that. He will stay [at 185] only to get Adesanya because he’s really upset, outraged with Adesanya’s post-fight attitude. He’s a bum. Warriors fight and when it’s over, it’s over. But doing that after the fight? He’s a bum, and he can expect a nightmare coming at him.”
Ismail said that Paulo Costa is angry and slammed Israel Adesanya for what he did after the fight:
“You can’t do that,” Ismail said. “‘Borrachinha’ is angry. It was disgusting, (Adesanya) showed his lack of character. Two warriors settle their issues in the fight, but he’s a bum. That’s the worst thing he could have done. (Costa) is pure anger right now.”
While Ismail acknowledged the brilliance of Israel Adesanya's performance, but also stated that Paulo Costa's approach and strategy was wrong, calling his client a "War fighter" and not a tactical one. Ismail stated that Paulo Costa has vowed that Israel Adesanya will pay for what he's done.
The road to a rematch for Paulo Costa
There's little going for Paulo Costa to get another title shot. After a one-sided loss, he's going to have to earn his way back to a title shot with three or more victories. If Israel Adesanya will still be the Champion by then, things could get a lot more interesting.Published 29 Sep 2020, 05:47 IST