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Paulo Costa makes things personal with Israel Adesanya: ‘If he takes the belt, I will kill him’

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Paulo Costa expects Robert Whittaker to defend the belt, but prefers Israel Adesanya to win because of personal reasons.

Middleweight contender Paulo Costa survived the toughest test of his career with a unanimous decision win over Yoel Romero. Now he has his attention locked into the the upcoming middleweight unification title fight between Robert Whittaker and Israel Adesanya at UFC 243.

In a backstage interview with ESPN’s Brett Okamoto, “Borrachinha” says he expects Whittaker to come out on top, but hopes Adesanya ends up with the victory.

“I think Whittaker will smash Adesanya. But if Adesanya wins, I will be happy to slap his face,” he said. “It’s personal against Adesanya.”

“He’s talked sh-t a lot, and he’s not proven (himself) yet. He needs to prove (himself),” he continued. “If Adesanya takes this belt, I will kill him.”

Adesanya is currently undefeated in his mixed martial arts career, and is coming off a win against Kelvin Gastelum at UFC 236 in April to win the interim belt. Costa, however, wasn’t impressed.

“No, (I wasn’t impressed). Kelvin Gastelum is not a middleweight.”

Costa took home an extra $50,000 for Fight of the Night honors, as he keeps his an intact undefeated record of 13-0 (with 12 wins by stoppage).