Paulo Costa Explains How Interim UFC Title Shot Was Nearly His

Paulo Costa explains
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Paulo Costa says he was close to getting a shot at the interim Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) middleweight title.

On April 13, Kelvin Gastelum and Israel Adesanya will do battle at UFC 236. The bout will take place in Atlanta, Georgia and will be contested for the interim middleweight championship. It’s a bout that nearly went to Costa if the Brazilian bruiser is to be believed.

Paulo Costa Talks Almost Getting Interim UFC Title Bout

Costa spoke to Brazilian outlet Encarada. During the interview, Costa went in-depth on how he almost received the interim middleweight title opportunity (via MMAJunkie.com):

“The UFC offered it to Adesanya, (and) he said ‘No, I don’t want to fight for the interim.’ Then, the UFC offered me the fight with Gastelum. I said, ‘I’ll take it.’ Then they talked to Adesanya again, and Adesanya said yes. Since I was already with (Yoel) Romero, they put Adesanya there and me with Romero. Regardless of who wins, Adesanya or Gastelum, when they fight for the title – if it happens, that fight for the title, because there can be injuries, a lot of things can happen – but if they fight for the undisputed title with Whittaker, I believe that, beating Romero, I’ll be next. I’ll be awaiting this fight.”

Costa vs. Yoel Romero is planned for UFC on ESPN 3 on April 27. It’s widely regarded as the toughest test in Costa’s professional mixed martial arts career. A win could put Costa in prime position for a title shot.

Would you have been intrigued if Paulo Costa was the one fighting Kelvin Gastelum for the interim UFC middleweight title?