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Paulo Costa after UFC 248: Israel Adesanya 'is the most shameful champion I have ever seen'

Paulo Costa was not impressed with Israel Adesanya’s title defense at UFC 248 and promises to unseat the middleweight champion when they fight later this year.

Costa (13-0 MMA, 5-0 UFC) was supposed to meet Adesanya (19-0 MMA, 8-0 UFC) in Saturday’s headliner, but an injury prevented him from making the date, giving Yoel Romero the opportunity instead. It turned out to be a lackluster fight, with the champion defending by unanimous decision in a bout that received plenty of criticism.

Following the event, which took place at T-Mobile Arena, Costa showed up at the post-fight news conference to express a thorough disgust for what he’d just witnessed.

“Horrible fight,” Costa told reporters, including MMA Junkie. “I was ashamed to watch that fight. Adesanya is nothing. Adesanya is the most shameful champion I have ever seen. He just runs. He’s nothing. He’s scared. I think he don’t deserve to talk about him, but he was (expletive). That fight was (expletive).”

Although Dana White’s thoughts were in line with Costa by calling it a “horrible fight,” the UFC president put the onus on Romero for his lack of aggression and output as the challenger. Costa disagreed, though, and thought Romero potentially did enough to win by holding the center of the octagon more over the course of 25 minutes.

Nevertheless, Adesanya retained the strap, and now a matchup between the two undefeated middleweights will be next. Costa said he’d like to see the fight happen during International Fight Week in July, and White said that’s certainly a possibility.

If and when they do compete, though, Costa said he’s not going to allow the fight to unfold in a similar fashion to what happened at UFC 248.

“I will make him cry,” Costa said. “I will hit him very badly, and he will cry like a baby. I will slap his face in my fight against him. That’s it. He’s shameful.”

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