UFC Middleweight Champion Israel Adesanya has some strong words for challenger Paulo Costa.
On September 26, Adesanya is set to take on Costa in a 185-pound title clash. The championship fight is scheduled to headline UFC 253, and this will be Adesanya’s second title defense.
Adesanya was a guest on a recent edition of Submission Radio. During his appearance, Adesanya claimed that he is in Costa’s head going into their title bout (via MMAFighting.com).
“I think I’m under his skin already,” Adesanya said. “Not really think, I know I’m under his skin already. I kind of wish this was, what do you call it, BC, before corona. I wish it was BC, because that way it would be a press conference around different countries or different cities, and I could see him face to face and I could actually give him sh*t and really dig under his skin. But he’s very easy to get under his skin.”
Adesanya went on to add that he feels Costa plays up a tough guy persona in front of the cameras. He believes Costa is afraid of him and has been ever since UFC 226. The champion claims he nearly had a scuffle with Costa.
“The Last Stylebender” is coming off a unanimous decision victory over Yoel Romero back in March at UFC 248. Adesanya would’ve taken on Costa on that night but “Borrachinha” was recovering from surgery.
Costa’s last outing took place on August 17, 2019. He bested Romero in unanimous decision victory to improve his pro MMA record to 13-0. It was the first time Costa went the distance in a professional MMA bout.
Like Costa, Adesanya is also undefeated in MMA at 19-0. Along the way, he has scored 14 knockouts. The 185-pound kingpin has said that he’s looking to have a stellar performance against Costa.