Paulo Costa calls for December return, blasts rival Khamzat Chimaev following ‘Weak’ fight at UFC 294

Paulo Costa blasts Khamzat Chimaev for weak win at UFC 294 targets December fight return

Recovering from multipl surgical procedures to address a nasty bursitis infection in his elbow, former undisputed middleweight title challenger, Paulo Costa remains hopeful of fighting this year despite his withdrawal from UFC 294 over the course of last weekend, claiming he would be open to fighting arch-enemy, Khamzat Chimaev as soon as December. 

Costa, the current number six ranked middleweight contender, was slated to fight at UFC 294 last weekend against rival, Chimaev, until a bursitis infection in his elbow – which has required three surgical procedures to address, forced his exit from the co-main event slot.

Attending the event nevertheless in Abu Dhabi, UAE, Costa watched on from fighter row as Chimaev took home a close, majority decision win over former welterweight champion and prior pound-for-pound number one, Kamaru Usman in a short-notice middleweight title-eliminator.

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Paulo Costa laughs off Khamzat Chimaev’s “weak” win at UFC 294

Providing an update on his own respective fighting plans, Costa, who has been sidelined since a decision win over ex-champion, Luke Rockhold in August of last year – claimed he could fight as soon as December, as well as mocking Chimaev’s performance against Usman, describing it as “weak”.

“It was a horrible fight, in my opinion, for (Khamzat) Chimaev,” Paulo Costa told Submission Radio. “I think Usman did what he could do. Usman was very short notice. You know, nine, 10 days training. And you need to fly to Abu Dhabi. You don’t have time to train. So, I think Chiamev messed with his opportunity to fight for the title. I don’t think he gonna fight for the title next, because Usman is not a legit middleweight. He was 170 pounds, very good fighter, we know.”

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“And I think if Usman had a little bit more time to train, like, three weeks, he would have beat him for sure,” Paulo Costa explained. “So, I truly believe, to be honest, to be fair, you need to fight a legit middleweight to be able to deserve something. So, I’m here, right here. So, why not? I will be able to fight in December. You can do this in December or January. I don’t know, I think December is time enough. I have been training for this fight for entire year since January when UFC contacted me about the fight. And yeah, I don’t need too much time. Just finish to healing this arm and jump in the training camp for five weeks is enough for me. I’m ready.” 

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Who would you like to see Paulo Costa fight in his return to the UFC?