Dana White Hopes To Re-Sign Paulo Costa

Paulo Costa entered the cage this past Saturday with Luke Rockhold.

But before Costa won by unanimous decision, he made weight for UFC 278 in Salt Lake City, but not everything went smoothly, Costa ranted to the UFC officials and media at the hotel in Salt Lake City.

Costa shared that a representative for the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA), the UFC’s drug-testing partner, came to his hotel room early. He had been cutting weight to prepare for official weigh-ins. For Costa, this was a time that fighters are dehydrated and remaining to cut. Costa also had his blood drawn.

Costa’s complaint about USADA’s timing is not a new one among fighters.

The agency requires the UFC’s fighters to keep it apprised of where they will be, which allows representatives to show up unannounced for random drug tests. That strategy is meant to keep any fighter who might consider breaking the rules from doing so, but it has ruffled plenty of feathers, too, when the timing is bad.

This is not the first complaint about USADA’s timing.

Representatives are allowed to show up unannounced for random drug tests, to prevent fighters from breaking rules, but the timing is not always key for the fighters.

UFC president Dana White was frustrated with USADA’s handling of the situation, and spoke to him about it at the weigh-ins.

“I apologized to (Costa) on stage. That’ll never happen again to any fighter,” White said at his UFC 278 post-event news conference.

“(USADA representatives) don’t know about fighting the way that people who know about fighting know about fighting. You don’t go in and test a guy at 6 in the morning when he’s cutting weight. The result’s going to be the same a few hours later. You wait. I apologized to him on stage when he came out, and that won’t happen to another fighter again.”

Costa (14-2 MMA, 6-2 UFC) won the fight against Rockhold (16-6 MMA, 6-5 UFC) for a unanimous decision sweep of the scorecards. The two fighters even got $50,000 bonuses for Fight of the Night.

With this win, it helped to secure White’s decision that he wants to see Costa back in the UFC.

“(I have) nothing but respect for both of those guys tonight. Of course we’d like to re-sign (Costa). We’ll see what happens.”

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