Paulo Costa has discredited Israel Adesanya’s status as the UFC middleweight champion and vowed to ‘kill him’ when they fight on September 26th.
Adesanya and Costa will meet in the main event of UFC 253 next month. The two undefeated middleweights have been going back and forth for months, with Adesanya recently suggesting Costa has used PED’s, labeling him the “perfect antagonist”.
In an interview with Submission Radio, Costa mocked Adesanya’s performance in his last fight against Yoel Romero at UFC 248 in February.
“I have just one question, Adesanya,” Costa said. “Why were you frozen when you faced Romero? You are not a real champion, man, you don’t deserve it. I will kill you.
“He knows he’s fragile. He knows he cannot get two or three very hard hits on his face, on his body. He will be broken,” Costa continued. “He knows that already because he was knocked out two times. ... Imagine what I can do with him, with his skinny, fragile body with 4 ounces on my hands.”
The biggest difference between Costa and Adesanya is “Borrachinha” isn’t afraid to take damage to put up a fight, Costa said. The Brazilian feels his fight against Romero is a perfect example of this, whilst Adesanya tended to not engage in toe-to-toe action with the hard-hitting Romero.
“I like to think of myself like a real tough guy – maybe the toughest guy on the planet. Because I train very hard, with two, three guys at the same session training with very hard hits, very hard punches, very hard kicks for real. 100 percent, I mean. Not just fake, just shadowboxing. No.
“So, this makes me very prepared to fight in real fights with real opponents like Romero. I am not afraid to get hit, because I did this already in my fight camp for two or three months. So, I’m properly prepared to make it a real fight. So, that’s the difference I think I have between me and Adesanya.”