Fabia Claims UFC Sabotaged Paulo Costa In Leadup To Adesanya Fight

Controversial MMA manager Joshua Fabia has an interesting take on why Paulo Costa didn’t perform up to par against Israel Adesanya.

Costa fell to Adesanya in his first career middleweight title shot at UFC 253 via TKO. He was outpointed from start to finish as Adesanya won his second successful title defense as middleweight champion.

After the fight, Costa pointed to a night of drinking wine before the fight as the main reason for his poor performance. But Costa explained that he did it to reduce stress the night before the biggest fight of his life.

During a recent interview with Talkin’ MMA, Fabia gave his side of the story as to why Costa drank wine to go to sleep the night before UFC 253.

“Here’s Paulo Costa drinking two bottles of wine to go to sleep. Nobody’s asking: Why was it hard to go to sleep?” Fabia said of Costa’s post-fight claims. “And I’ll tell you why. The W hotel is shaped like a curve. On the inside of the curve of the building, is a race track in Abu Dhabi. From probably Formula 1, to supercars, to all this crazy stuff, does this race track. And it’s for very wealthy people, it’s not like Joe Blow is down there. What happens is the night before the fight, the fucking race track is going until like 3:00 in the morning. The noise didn’t start until like 10:00, but it went until 3 or 4:00 in the morning. It was insane.

UFC Fight Night Paulo Costa post fight interview
Paulo Costa

“People don’t understand that on the other side of the world, they’re on quite a bit of a different schedule. They stay up a lot later. That whole time, now there’s a lot of noise. So you got this hotel that’s shaped like a C, and what happened was there’s a bunch of fighters on the inside of the C, which is on the side of the track. Where the track is just blasting into you. Well, that was the side that Diego and I were on, that’s the side that all the Brazilians were on. The Brazilians were underneath us. So, I can guarantee that Israel Adesanya was on the other side of the building.”

Fabia went on to accuse the UFC of sabotaging Costa by putting him on the side of the hotel where it was harder to ignore noise.

“If I don’t want you to win, I don’t want you to get a good night’s sleep. With boxing, there’s an A-side and a B-side, MMA has a similar thing but it’s not just out in the open. You know who is supposed to lose because they do a media campaign two months before shitting on this guy.”

Costa most recently fought against Marvin Vettori last year, losing via unanimous decision in a light heavyweight bout. Despite his previous struggles with weight cutting, he remains adamant about a return to the UFC at middleweight.

Costa will need to go on another winning streak to get back into the middleweight title picture. As Adesanya gets ready to face Jared Cannonier later this year, Costa is looking to eventually redeem himself and earn UFC gold.

Do you think we’ll see Israel Adesanya and Paulo Costa fight in a rematch?

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