The rivalry between UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya and challenger Paulo Costa is now very personal after the pair went back and forth verbally in a recent ESPN interview and the Brazilian knockout artist Costa has predicted a violent finish against Adesanya, who the former believes “freezes” in the face of adversity. (h/t MMA Fighting)
“I have just one question, Adesanya, why were you frozen when you faced [Yoel] Romero?” he told Submission Radio. “You are not a real champion, man, you don’t deserve it. I will kill you.”
Predicting the outcome of the upcoming fight, Paulo Costa said that his power will be too much for the "fragile" Nigerian-born Kiwi to handle.
“He knows he’s fragile,” Costa said. “He knows he cannot get two or three very hard hits on his face, on his body. He will be broken. He knows that already because he was knocked out two times. ... Imagine what I can do with him, with his skinny, fragile body with 4 ounces on my hands.”
Adesanya will defend his title for the second time on Sept. 26 when he faces Costa in the headliner of UFC 253. Paulo Costa even mocked Adesanya for talking the big game and never backing it up. Paulo Costa said that Adesanya called out former UFC light heavyweight champ Jon Jones but when the latter agreed to fight him, Adesanya said he needs more time to prepare for the fight.
“He’s used to doing that. He called out Jon Jones to fight. And then when Jon Jones accepted his challenge, he said, ‘No, I’m not prepared yet, I need one or two years to get more weight, to get more muscle to fight Jon Jones.’ So, Adesanya, unfortunately he is this kind of guy who freezes when he faces a real competitor. I will erase him. I definitely will erase him. Prepare to be erased, Adesanya.”
Paulo Costa’s coach, Eric Albarracin claimed that Adesanya will be left battered and bruised following his fight against the Brazilian at UFC 253. he was even bold enough to say that Paulo Costa will "practice social distancing in the cage and separate Israel Adesanya’s teeth from his mouth by about six feet".
“[Costa is] gonna leave him so swollen that he’s gonna have to go up to heavyweight and fight Jon Jones like he always wanted,” the coach said. “It’s COVID-19 quarantine everywhere, and I also predict Paulo will practice social distancing in the cage and separate Israel Adesanya’s teeth from his mouth by about six feet.Published 26 Aug 2020, 04:07 IST