Paulo Costa Reaches Agreement with UFC on New Contract

Paulo Costa UFC
Paulo Costa, UFC 278 ceremonial weigh-in Credit: Eddie Law/Cageside Press

It looks like Brazilian middleweight Paulo Costa will be remaining with the UFC for the time being.

Costa (14-2), a former title challenger who came up short against Israel Adesanya in 2020, has been vocal in the past about his lack of satisfaction with pay in the UFC. For his fight with Marvin Vettori in October 2021, “Borrachinha” he claimed that he made a paltry $35,000 despite headlining the event (though he missed weight, coughing up 20% of his purse as a result).

Some tough negotiations with the fighter led to UFC President Dana White calling him a “lunatic” late last year.

There’s a happy ending to the story in this case, however. Costa, 31, announced in an interview with PVT on Wednesday that he’d agreed to a new deal with the promotion.

“Certain negotiations with UFC are very difficult, sometimes it takes a long time and this one, in my case, specifically took a long time,” Costa stated in the interview (via Google translate). “I’ve been talking to the UFC about renewal since my last fight, even before my fight with [Luke] Rockhold, we were already talking, there was some interest from them and me to renew with the UFC.”

While Costa says he hasn’t signed the contract yet, “we reached an agreement with the UFC,” he revealed. He credited girlfriend Tamara Alves’ work on the deal, saying she had reached out to people in the entertainment industry with previous experience dealing with the UFC to help get the deal done.

Costa was last seen in action against Rockhold at UFC 278 in August of 2022. He won a three-round unanimous decision in the fight, sending Rockhold into retirement (though that is at an end already, with the former UFC champ making his debut for BKFC next month).

No date is set for Paulo Costa’s next fight, but bouts with Sean Strickland and Khamzat Chimaev are a possibility.