Ahead of UFC 279, bad blood has been brewing between middleweight/welterweight Khamzat Chimaev and 185’er Paulo Costa — a pair of fighters not even scheduled to face one another.
Chimaev (11-0) is set to face Nate Diaz in the main event of UFC 279 this weekend. Costa (14-2) is coming off a win over Luke Rockhold at UFC 278. Yet in recent days, Costa had released a video claiming that Chimaev was “not a gangster” and siding with Diaz in the pair’s upcoming fight.
Now, the duo have had to be separated following an altercation in advance of the PPV.
It appears Chimaev did not take too kindly to Costa’s words.
“I think Nate Diaz will beat him, and Nate Diaz is a real gangster. Chimaev calls himself a real gangster, but Chimaev is not a real gangster,” Costa said in his original video, which you can view below.
In an undated video posted by Costa to his official Youtube channel, the Brazilian shows footage of Chimaev showing up at the UFC Performance Institute in Las Vegas, where Costa can be seen alongside Diaz teammate and coach Jake Shields.
“He said my name ‘hey Borrachinha,’ like he called me to talk. I went there, I faced him and he said ‘hey Borrachinha, why did you talk about me?’” Costa explained in the video clip. “I said ‘why did I talk about you?’ I said ‘you want to fight me?’ He said ‘no, I want to know why you talk about me?’ I said, ‘I want to fight you. If you beat Nate Diaz, I want to fight you.'”
Footage then shows Chimaev being restrained by members of his team, while Shields appears to position himself between Costa for a moment, though the Brazilian appears fairly restrained.
Chimaev can be overheard calling “Borrachinha” a “Brazilian p*ssy” at one point.
Later in the footage released by Costa, the middleweight sends a message to Chimaev. “I’m one man. I walk alone and I can beat you alone with just one hand. You’re not enough, motherf*cker.”
An alternate angle of the encounter shows Chimaev complaining that Costa won’t engage with him.
Regardless of your thoughts on the encounter, it’s probably not a good idea for Chimaev to be trying to engage in a fight outside the octagon just days out from his first time headlining a Pay-Per-View event.