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Morning Report: Israel Adesanya on Paulo Costa: ‘I know I’m under his skin already’

Israel Adesanya Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

The next big event in the world of fighting is UFC 253, and though it’s still a month away, the promotion for the middleweight title fight is in full swing. Champion Israel Adesanya and top contender Paulo Costa have been engaging in a heated war of words for almost a year now and with their title fight finally on the horizon, things are only heating up.

This past weekend, Adesanya and Costa were hosted by ESPN’s SportsCenter to engage in a tete-a-tete and things got a little testy. In the aftermath Costa went on to say Adesanya is no “real champion” and that he intends to brutalize him, even suggesting that in their encounter on ESPN, Adesanya revealed how scared he truly is by using his accomplishments as a shield. Of course, Adesanya disagrees.

Speaking with Submission Radio, Adesanya also commented about their recent joint interview, saying that it proved to him that Costa is mentally rattled already.

“I think I’m under his skin already,” Adesanya said. “Not really think, I know I’m under his skin already. I kind of wish this was, what do you call it, BC, before corona. I wish it was BC, because that way it would be a press conference around different countries or different cities, and I could see him face to face and I could actually give him sh*t and really dig under his skin. But he’s very easy to get under his skin.”

But this isn’t exactly new for Adesanya. The middleweight champion also commented that Costa has been wary of him for years, recounting his own version of events of the night the two nearly got into an altercation backstage at UFC 226. Brett Okamoto was interviewing Adesanya who had competed the night before and Costa has just knocked out Urijah Hall. And according to Adesanya’s version of events, he knew he had “Borrachinha” shook.

“I was doing an interview with Brett and he came to do his interview with Brett, but he was like six feet away from me, and I’m looking at him the whole time talking to Brett,” Adesanya said. “And he wouldn’t look me in the eye. He just was looking at the wall, finding any reason to avoid, knowing who the f*ck I am, knowing I just whooped ass that night before him. And even when I was talking sh*t about him, he would just look at the wall and just ignore me. He likes to act tough when there’s people there and there’s cameras there, but if me and him run into an elevator, I guarantee you he’ll face the other way or he wouldn’t say anything in the elevator. Like, it’s just cuz there’s people around and there’s cameras and he wants the hoopla.”

Costa will get more than the hoopla at UFC 253 when the two finally lock horns. Unless of course, things get froggy on fight week and something happens early. As the feud between the two men has escalated, so has the propensity for some chicanery to occur beforehand, and Adesanya says that if it does, he and his team will be ready.

“He’s not going to have enough energy to do sh*t,” Adesanya said. “He’ll be sucked out, dry to the bone. He’ll probably be pretty quiet, I’m assuming. Or he’ll say something and then shut up. But if we run into each other, I don’t care if he wants to throw down, we can throw down. I have my whole crew with me. I’ll have the gang gang with me.

“You don’t understand. I’ve got the gang with me. So, if he wants to try something stupid with white glasses and f*cking cringe King whoever, bring it. My gang versus your gang. But I’d rather whoop his ass in the cage. So, he better not try something stupid.”

UFC 253 takes place on Sep. 26 at a still yet to be determined location.


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Shade. Dana White: Scott Coker’s best light heavyweight claim ‘cute,’ superfights ‘dumbest idea ever’.

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Thanks for reading and see y’all tomorrow.



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