Paulo Costa’s Manager Claims Dana White Wants Robert Whittaker to Fight Costa Next

Published 01/02/2021, 2:09 PM EST
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – SEPTEMBER 27: Paulo Costa of Brazil enters the arena prior to facing Israel Adesanya of Nigeria in their middleweight championship bout during UFC 253 inside Flash Forum on UFC Fight Island on September 27, 2020 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC)


Ever since losing to Israel Adesanya, Paulo Costa has been on the sidelines. In several videos, he has expressed a desire for an immediate rematch with Adesanya. However, considering how he lost to the champion, an immediate rematch is probably off the table. Hence, Costa’s manager, Wallid Ismail, is now angling for a fight against Robert Whittaker.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

After defeating Costa, Adesanya is now eyeing a move up to light heavyweight in search of his second belt. He will fight the 205-pounds kingpin Jan Blachowicz in March. While ‘The Last Stylebender’ prepares for the status of a ‘double champ’, Ismail has an idea. He wants the UFC to book a fight between Costa and Whittaker for the interim title.

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – JULY 24: Robert Whittaker of New Zealand poses on the scale during the UFC Fight Night weigh-in inside Flash Forum on UFC Fight Island on July 24, 2020, in Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

This fight has been discussed ever since they first announced that Adesanya would fight the 205-pound champion Blachowicz. Dana White said he wants this fight, that he would make this fight happen, and Whittaker said he would only fight for the belt next. We’re just waiting for Dana White to book this fight,” Costa’s manager told MMA Fighting.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Wallid Ismail hypes up a rematch between Israel Adesanya and Paulo Costa

Before he stepped inside the Octagon, many considered Costa to be Adesanya’s toughest opponent. However, when the door of the Octagon closed, it was a completely different story. Adesanya stopped Costa’s undefeated run in a manner that was as dominant as it could get.

Robert Whittaker also suffered his last loss against Adesanya. ‘The Reaper’ claimed that he was in a state of burnout when he fought Adesanya and that he ‘just wasn’t himself’ in that contest. Following a break after that setback, the Aussie has returned stronger than ever. He has since defeated top contenders Darren Till and Jared Cannonier.

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – SEPTEMBER 27: (L-R) Paulo Costa of Brazil punches Israel Adesanya of Nigeria in their middleweight championship bout during UFC 253 inside Flash Forum on UFC Fight Island on September 27, 2020 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC)

Despite Whittaker’s resurgence, Costa’s manager is confident that his client will come out on top, which will pave way for a rematch with Adesanya.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

This is the best fight for 185, the No. 1 against the No. 2,” Ismail said. “The winner… Borrachinha will win, and with that win, imagine how many pay-per-views a rematch with Adesanya would do. It’s a business. It’s the best pay-per-view possible because Borrachinha and Adesanya really hate each other, but we can’t leave the division on hold. That’s why we have to make this for the interim belt.

“It’s a win-win for the UFC, and that’s what Dana White wants. He knows that Borrachinha vs. Whittaker will sell well, and he knows how much the title unification bout will sell, too.”

Considering the way Costa went out against Adesanya, he will have to register an impressive win against Whittaker if he wants to get back in the title picture.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

DIVE DEEPER

Why Jan Blachowicz Is a Dangerous Threat to Israel Adesanya

5 months ago

SHARE THIS ARTICLE :

Rishabh Singh

655 articles

Rishabh Singh is an MMA author at EssentiallySports since 2020. An engineer in the making, his love for combat sports began by watching Anderson Silva light people up inside the Octagon. When he isn't busy in his technical pursuits, he is an avid reader with a love for sports in general and sporting history in particular.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT