Paulo Costa will lastly get his probability to tackle bitter rival Israel Adesanya for the undisputed middleweight championship of the world this Saturday at UFC 253.
The principle occasion on Combat Island will put two of essentially the most harmful 185lbs fighters on the planet in opposition to each other on Yas Island, Abu Dhabi.
Costa has wreaked havoc within the middleweight division since showing on the Final Fighter and moved to 9-Zero with 9 consecutive first spherical finishes to propel himself up the UFC rankings.
Though he has solely had 13 fights professionally, the Brazilian has showcased large energy and horrifying precision in his bouts and has solely gone the gap as soon as – a choice victory over Yoel Romero in his final combat.
With relentless ahead strain and an astonishingly excessive output, it appears as if swarming the ‘Final Stylebender’ early doorways would be the key to victory for Costa.
And ‘Borranchinha’ has greater than sufficient stopping energy to finish the combat early.
Chael Sonnen was Costa’s coach on the Final Fighter in Brazil and remembers simply how ferocious the hulking teenager was and the way decided he was to enhance.
He mentioned on his podcast: “I bear in mind he used to hit mitts, and while you’re within the locker room of the set, you’re simply behind a really skinny door, only a door sufficient to separate you.”
Sonnen described the sound of the fists hitting the mitts as gun blasts and mentioned: “It seemed like shotgun blasts going off.”
“When he broke into the UFC he was 10-Zero and coach [Eric] Albarracin who labored with him lots,” he added.
“He would by no means say this man is the perfect submission man or greatest wrestler on the market. He would say that is the toughest employee within the room.”
It’s doubtless the winner of Saturday’s principal occasion on Combat Island will face former champion Robert Whittaker sooner or later within the not-so distant future.
Earlier than his combat in Abu Dhabi with Darren Until (successfully a quantity on contender match) Whittaker burdened the scale of Costa makes him much more terrifying.
“Who can say? I believe Adesanya has the skillset essential to beat Costa,” Whittaker mentioned throughout media day in July. “He’s very technical, he’s excellent. He’s a superb fighter. Don’t like him very a lot however he’s a superb fighter.
“However Costa’s harmful. He’s so explosive, he’s obtained mad cardio and he hits like a truck. Have a look at the scale of him.
“I’m certain that does one thing… that has one thing to do with why he retains hurting individuals. ‘Measurement doesn’t matter’ — take a look at the scale of him!
“You combat him then and inform me it doesn’t matter. Yeah, let’s discover out.”
Steven Peterson can also be backing Costa to get the job performed this weekend, predicting gorgeous end for the 29-year-old.
He mentioned: “We’ve all been trying ahead to this match-up for a very long time. Israel Adesanya is among the most skilful and entertaining champions in a very long time.
“Paulo Costa is an undefeated powerhouse and has been demolishing his opponents. Izzy must combat an nearly excellent combat. He wants to stay and transfer and choose aside Costa.
“On the opposite facet, Paulo solely must land one and with the ability and ability he has, I’ve to go together with him. I predict a surprising first spherical KO by Costa.”
And UFC welterweight Frank Camacho additionally believes Costa’s energy would be the key to victory for ‘Borrachinha’ in opposition to Adesanya.
He mentioned: “I like the best way Costa fights and I believe he can land the knockout punch.”