Paulo Costa is going to need to see some changes to keep him in Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) once his contract expires.
A perennial top contender within the 185-pound Middleweight ranks, Costa is currently riding high off a big “Fight of the Night” unanimous decision victory against Luke Rockhold at UFC 278 in Aug. 2022 (watch highlights). Despite believing the fight may have been his last on his contract, Costa revealed afterward that he actually has one more to get out of the way before he can test free agency.
Today (Weds., Nov. 2, 2022), “Borrachinha” revealed that his contract has an upcoming expiration date, which will lead him away from mixed martial arts (MMA). Surely, Costa is referencing his newly scheduled fight against former UFC titleholder, Robert Whittaker, on Feb. 12, 2023, at UFC 284.
“My miserable contract with the UFC was up in a few short months,” Costa tweeted. “will expire in time. A new #boxer is coming to town! [hands up emoji]”
This isn’t the first time Costa has shared interest in boxing because of its better payouts compared to MMA. If Costa can head into negotiations with a second straight big win, he should certainly have better leverage with UFC as opposed to being on a two-fight skid as he was before facing Rockhold.
Still in the prime of his career, Costa, 31, has been a finishing machine throughout his 16-fight run. It wasn’t until the Brazilian’s 13th professional bout against Yoel Romero that he’d see the judges' scorecards, securing knockout wins in 11 of his first 12 victories.
Costa doesn’t quite fit the bill of opponents for a Jake Paul type — who he has mentioned in the past — but he’d presumably be better suited for a boxing run than many of the names seen jumping from sport to sport in 2022.