It sounds like Paulo Costa is eager to resume his UFC career. Now that the middleweight has come to an agreement with the promotion regarding his new contract, ‘Borrachinha’ feels ready to start thinking about who he is going to fight next.
In an interview with Ag Fight, Costa explained that the man who would make the most sense for him to fight next is none other than Khamzat Chimaev, especially if they could fight in Abu Dhabi, in the United Arab Emirates. If that pairing can’t be made, Costa believes a fight against former champion Robert Whittaker would also be fitting, since the pair was supposed to meet in February before Borrachinha withdrew.
“We have two options. To wait and do this fight in October (against Chimaev), or do one more before that. Right now we are working with the UFC, because it interests both parties. Once the money problem, which was the obstacle, was solved, we’re fully interested in working together with them to make the biggest promoting possible, get the best engagement and make best fight. The one that makes most sense. That fight in Abu Dhabi would be huge. We’re going to know the other details in the coming days. But we’re working with the UFC to understand and choose the best fight,”
“I think Whittaker would also be a great fight, in case something were to happen with Chimaev.” Costa said. “I still think the fight in the Middle East makes much more sense if it’s against Chimaev, but any of them—Chimaev or Whittaker—would be a great fight.”
In the same interview, Paulo’s manager and fiancee, Tamara Alves, explained why the UFC should be interested in the Chimaev fight. For Alves, she believes that the pairing would sell well in the Asian market.
“The UFC is interested in both fights, but they really do see that the potential of a fight against Chimaev is gigantic. It’s Abu Dhabi, there’s that Asian market. They know Chimaev and Paulo have a true rivalry and that would help selling the fight. So who Paulo is going to fight depends on what the promotion wants to do with the product, with Paulo and the other athletes, too.”
In his last outing, Costa (14-2) defeated former champion Luke Rockhold via unanimous decision. The win snapped a two-fight losing skid for the 31-year-old, who suffered consecutive losses to Israel Adesanya and Marvin Vettori.
About the author