What event is this?
UFC 253 Adesanya vs Costa
Where is UFC 253 being held?
Flash Forum, Fight Island, Yas Island, Abu Dhabi
How many bouts are on this UFC 253 card?
11 bouts (five on main card, four on prelims, two on early prelims)
Which division has the most fights on the UFC 253 card?
Light Heavyweight (three bouts)
What time can I watch UFC 253 in the UK?
UFC 253 prelim action begins at 00:00 GMT on BT Sport
UFC 253 Main Event: Israel Adesanya (New Zealand) vs Paulo Costa (Brazil)
The saying ‘styles make fights’ gets flung around, but here, it may be the perfect time to use it. Costa’s terrifying aggression, strength, power and ability to turn any fight into a brawl. Up against Adesanya’s precision, movement, footwork, and counter-striking real gives this fight potential to go down as an all-time great.
The Adesanya and Costa rivalry began after UFC 243, following Adesanya’s win against Robert Whittaker to become the Undisputed Middleweight champion. The Last Stylebender took the mic and dared Costa to step into the octagon and fight him. “I got this overly inflated balloon animal, this heavy Ricky martin wannabe – trust me, when im done with his face, he will really look like Ricky Martin. Botched.”
Ever since the two have gone back and forth with Adesanya even accusing Costa of using PEDs as the reason for him being so freakishly athletic. The Brazilian has one of the best physics in UFC history and really looks like a heavyweight fighting at middleweight.
Israel Adesanya (19-0)
Israel Adesanya, otherwise known as the Last Stylebender, had a meteoric 2019. To many the fighter of the year, with great bouts against Anderson Silva, Kelvin Gastelum and finished the year off with his incredible display against Robert Whittaker. Adesanya sits on a professional record of 19-0-0.
Adesanya began as a kickboxer and boxer before moving to mixed martial arts. At 6’4 and with an 80 inch reach, Adesanya’s long lean frame allows him to be quick, awkward and very versatile in the cage. Adesanya constantly switches stances, making it tough to read what he’s going to do.
However, in his most recent fight against a very similar fighter to Paulo Costa in the form of Yoel Romero, Adesanya caught a lot of stick for fighting to passive and slow. Referee Dan Miragliotta having to tell the pair to engage several times. Despite getting the win, it was the first time in Adesanya’s short UFC career that he has received any real backlash or criticism.
Paulo Costa (13-0)
Paulo Costa, otherwise known as the eraser, earned the nickname from doing exactly that. The Brazilian signed with the UFC in 2017 and holds a professional record of 13-0-0. Costa’s incredible knockout power and stand up ability is matched by very few. Costa holds the UFC record for the most strikes landed per minute in the UFC at 8.43. However, volume isn’t the only place where Costa excels. He also averages the third highest significant strike accuracy in middleweight history.
Equipped with a black belt in jiu-jitsu also, Costa’s ground game is often overlooked because of his stand up. But don’t be fooled. His immense size and strength make his ground game and grappling very effective.
Costa’s UFC debut in 2017 was up against Gareth McClellan and lasted a little over a minute. Later in the year, Costa’s breakout performance came up against former UFC welterweight champion Johny Hendricks. Costa made the former champion look like an amateur.
Costa’s most recent fight also came up against Yoel Romero. however the fight could not have gone any more different to Adesanya’s. Neither man held nothing back, and it was a complete dog fight, with Costa winning by unanimous decision. This was the first fight to go the distance in Costa’s professional career.
Israel Adesanya Last Five Fights
- Yoel Romero – Win by unanimous decision
- Robert Whittaker – Win by counter left hook in Round 2
- Kelvin Gastelum – Win by unanimous decision
- Anderson Silva – Win by unanimous decision
- Derek Brunson – Win by knees and punches in Round 1
Paulo Costa Last Five Fights
- Yoel Romero – Win by unanimous decision
- Uriah Hall – Win by punches in Round 2
- Johny Hendricks – Win by punches in Round 2
- Oluwale Bamgbose – Win by punches in Round 2
- Garreth McLellan – Win by punches in Round 1
- It is only the second time in UFC history that two male fighters are undefeated coming into a title fight
- Adesanya has an 8 inch reach advantage over Costa
- The fight will take place in the new 25 foot cage, rather than the old 30 foot.
UFC 253: Adesanya vs Costa Preliminary Card
Light Heavyweight: Khadis Ibragimov vs Danilo Marques
Heavyweight: Juan Espino vs Jeff Hughes
Light Heavyweight: William Knight vs Aleksa Camur
Featherweight: Shane Young vs Ludovit Klein
Welterweight: Diego Sanchez vs Jake Matthews
Lightweight: Brad Riddell vs Alex da Silva Coelho
UFC 253: Adesanya vs Costa Main Card
Featherweight: Hakeem Dawodu vs Zubaira Tukhugov
Women Bantamweight: Ketlen Vieira vs Sijara Eubanks
Flyweight: Kai Kara-France vs Brandon Royval
Light Heavyweight: Dominick Reyes vs Jan Blachowicz
Middleweight: Israel Adesanya vs Paulo Costa
Mitchell’s Betting Tips
This is a great matchup for Kai “Don’t Blink” Kara-France, who is difficult to pin down and can use his speed and feints to avoid Brandon Rovyal. Kai Kara-France is 4/11* with Mark Jarvis.
Talented kickboxer Dominick Reyes will be extra motivated knowing he can now get his hands on the vacant belt he was so close to earning against Jon Jones. Reyes to win is 1/3*.
Costa throws huge wide punches, leaving lots of space for Adesanya to counter in this UFC 253 Main Event. Get Adesanya to win at 8/15* with Mark Jarvis.
*Odds as of time of writing (Thursday 24th September 2020) and subject to change
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