Paulo Costa Now Making Seven-Figure Sum Per Fight Says Manager

Paulo Costa’s protracted contract negotiations appear to have paid off handsomely for the middleweight star according to his manager and girlfriend Tamara Alves, who has claimed that he will now be earning a seven-figure sum for every fight in the Octagon.

“Paulo went from being one of the most devalued athletes to one of the most valued athletes in the UFC,” Alves told Ag. Fight. “I have no doubt that Paulo is the highest-paid Brazilian athlete in the organization today. I don’t know if you know any Brazilian athlete that is paid more than a million dollars per fight. I don’t — especially in non-title fights.”

Alves also revealed that Costa had been offered $500,000 and a further $150,000 win bonus for a fight with Robert Whittaker last year amid their contract negotiations, but he turned it down believing that he was worth more.

“Paulo is a product that the UFC knows it sells,” Alves said after sealing the bumper new deal. “Paulo’s pay-per-view with [Israel] Adesanya was the highest pay-per-view sale in the middleweight division. The UFC has those numbers. The UFC knows the numbers Paulo can reach.”

It’s worth noting that Adesanya himself was paid a $1 million base salary for his last title fight in November, a loss to Alex Pereira, who was paid $500,000 + a £100,000 win bonus.

So, if Costa’s new seven-figure sum is accurate then it’s a very impressive salary that puts the 31-year-old right up there with some of the biggest stars in the promotion.

And that’s a little surprising given that the Brazilian star has had a rough few years, from claiming that he’d been drinking the night prior to his title challenge loss to Adesanya, then forcing his next opponent Marvin Vettori to fight him at 205lbs during fight week after failing to get anywhere close to cutting down to middleweight.

Costa went on to lose that fight, and though he did pick up a victory over Luke Rockhold last time out, it was far from an impressive performance.

Nevertheless, the No.5 ranked Costa remains a big player in the division and does still have star power, and so as he signals his interest in big fights with the likes of Khamzat Chimaev and Sean Strickland the UFC will hoping that their investment pays off in the long run.

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.