The bizarre goings-on around tomorrow night’s UFC Fight Night 196 main event between Paulo Costa and Marvin Vettori continue with the news that the bout now has had another weight-change, moving up to 205lbs.
Originally the fight was scheduled to take place at 185lbs, but just three days before the fight it emerged that Costa still weighed 212lbs and wouldn’t be able to make the cut.
Despite Vettori’s disbelief that Costa not only couldn’t make weight, but appeared to be taking absolutely no responsibility for his unprofessionalism, he still made a deal with him during an ESPN head-to-head interview to amend the bout to a 195lb catchweight, leading to a new contract being signed.
Apparently even that proved too much for Costa as on even shorter notice the fight will now take place at 205lbs instead.
Vettori has to be commended for his commitment to fighting Costa even despite all the disruption, but it really does feel exceptionally unfair to him to have to fight 20lbs above their initially agreed limit after having spent an entire training camp dieting to make the middleweight limit, while Costa appears not to have been as disciplined.
It does cast some serious questions about what is going on with Costa, particularly since he himself had previously claimed that his surprisingly lackluster performance in a title fight with Israel Adesanya on Fight Island last year was due to drinking a bottle of wine the night before the bout due to having trouble sleeping.
He had further elaborated that he often drank a glass of wine to combat insomnia in the past, but had been trying to change his ways after still feeling the affects of the alcohol during his fight with Adesanya.
Vettori had actually questioned out loud whether Costa was drunk during their interview on ESPN earlier this week after Costa refused to accept any blame for his weight-cut failure, with the Brazilian star instead pressuring his opponent to ‘be a man’ and accept the fight with him regardless of the weight, while also trying to get him to waive any potential fine he might face.
Whatever the reason, Costa’s attitude feels off and there is an argument to be made that perhaps this fight shouldn’t be happening at all.