UFC middleweight contender, Paulo Costa, recently made headlines by revealing that he went into his much-anticipated title shot, against Israel Adesanya, under the influence of alcohol.
Costa went on to lose the pivotal matchup via second-round KO. However, according to Costa, he was suffering from severe pre-fight leg cramps. This led him to drink a full bottle of wine in an attempt to dull the pain. Whilst this may have been effective in alleviating the pain from his legs, it certainly did not help when he made the walk to the octagon.
“I was kind of drunk [when] I fought, maybe, on a hangover,” Costa said in Portuguese. “I couldn’t sleep because of the [leg] cramps. It was my mistake and I don’t blame anyone else, it was something I chose [to do], but, in order to try to sleep, because I had to sleep since I was awake for 24 hours, I had wine, too much wine, a bottle [of wine] to try to black out. I had a glass and didn’t work. Two glasses, it didn’t work. Half bottle, didn’t work. I had it all”
The fight against Adesanya was Costa’s first professional loss. However, ‘Borrachinha’ does not see it that way. Costa took to Twitter to state the following:
“Sober Costa is still undefeated”
Sober Costa is still undefeated 🍷
— Paulo Costa ( Borrachinha ) (@BorrachinhaMMA) March 3, 2021
Regardless of the Adesanya fight, Costa is now scheduled to face off against Robert Whittaker, in what will likely be a title eliminator matchup. Should Costa lose again, whether it be sober or not, he will likely rapidly descend the 185lb rankings. Marvin Vettori and Darren Till are both also fighting in the future, and the winner could well make a case for his own shot at the title next.