Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) middleweight champion Robert Whittaker is not going to fight again this year, even if the promotion offered him a chance to reclaim his 185-pound crown.
So no, that Paulo Costa bout is not “in the works.”
“Yeah, nah, I haven’t heard anything about anything. Did he say in December? There’s no way I’m fighting in December,” Whittaker told Submission Radio. “No way. I wasn’t gonna fight for a title in December, I’m not gonna fight him. Nah, there’s nothing happening.”
Whittaker is expecting another child before the end of the year.
The 22-5 Aussie has bigger fish to fry after capturing two straight wins over Top 5 opponents, though it may be difficult to convince Israel Adesanya to rematch “The Reaper” when more exciting opportunities await, like a Jan Blachowicz title fight or even a Jon Jones super fight.
“I guess the ball is in his court,” Whittaker said. “He’s the champ, he beat me last time. So, I’m hustling for a rematch like a salty kid. Shouldn’t have lost the first time. But I’m excited for… I’m not excited, cause fighting’s never really fun, it’s kind of stressful, but I look forward to that rematch, cause as a fighter, as an athlete, I want to try and get that one back.”
Sounds like UFC matchmakers have their work cut out for them.