Paulo Costa Gets Marvin Vettori Fight Changed To 195lb Catchweight

Just three days before they compete in a middleweight bout at UFC Fight Night 196 on Saturday night, Paulo Costa suddenly asked Marvin Vettori to agree to a catchweight.

That’s a big ask, but bizarrely, during a head-to-head discussion on an ESPN interview, Costa repeatedly avoided apologizing for his failure to make the originally agreed 186lb limit, suggesting it was UFC officials who had suggested the catchweight due to believing that he had arrived in Las Vegas to heavy to safely get down to middleweight.

Instead of accepting responsibility for his part in the late weight switch-up, Costa tried to pin the blame on Vettori if the fight fell through and attempted to pressure him into waiving the mandatory 30% fine that will end up in his opponent’s pocket.

“Don’t want me to be fined,” Costa said. “[By you saying], “Oh, if you don’t pay 30 percent, I will not fight.’ Be a man. Be a man of your words and show up to fight on Saturday.”

Like the rest of the MMA world, Vettori looked on in disbelief as Costa spoke, then attempted to explain to him why everything he was saying was absurd under the circumstances.

“You’re supposed to make weight! Every fighter here is supposed to make weight,” Vettori said. “We have a moment, it’s called weigh-in – maybe you don’t know about it – where you’re supposed to step on the scale and be some kind of weight. We have a weight division we fight in. You act like you don’t know this part.”

Rather than acknowledging this fact, Costa remarked that he didn’t care what weight Vettori was on Saturday night.

“And which weight were you supposed to make on Friday? 185? I don’t care if you weigh 185, 195, 205…your choice,” Costa said. “It’s up to you.”

In the end Vettori agreed to fight him at a catchweight of 195lbs, but he couldn’t help wondering aloud why Costa was acting so strangely.

“I feel like this guy’s drunk, bro,” Vettori laughed. “You been drinking a little bit?”

“Not yet,” Costa said in a matter-of-fact manner that had Vettori chuckling and shaking his head again. “Maybe after the fight I invite you.”

Though Vettori has appeared to take this all in his stride it’s far from an ideal situation and really does leave huge question marks over Costa heading into this bout.

The word for now is that 48 hours before weigh-ins he tips the scales at 212lbs, and as things stand the fight still goes ahead on Saturday night.

Ross launched MMA Insight (previously in 2009 as a way to channel his passion for the sport of mixed martial arts. He's since penned countless news stories and live fight reports along with dozens of feature articles as the lead writer for the site, reaching millions of fans in the process.