Paulo Costa was originally scheduled to fight Jared Cannonier as a main-event spot for UFC Fight Night on August 21, 2021. It was announced before but there are reports that Kelvin Gastelum will step in once more for Costa’s spot to fight Cannonier.
Costa posted on his twitter account that he did not sign any contracts and that he deserves a main-event payday rather than the pay offered to him. Costa has not fought since his lost to the current champion, Israel Adesanya and it was back 27 September of 2020
Just to be clear. I never signed or locked up that contract. Why ufc announced this fight if didn’t signed? My question too
— Paulo Costa ( Borrachinha ) (@BorrachinhaMMA) June 5, 2021
He was supposedly scheduled to face Robert Whittaker but pulled out due to illness and it was Kelvin Gastelum that took the fight on short notice. Now Gastelum is ready to step in once more and fight Jared Cannonier, a powerful knockout striker. Whittaker just beat both Cannonier and Gastelum but is still a banger fight.
Costa coming off a loss might not be a wise move to ask for a bigger pay since there is always another fighter that is ready to step in. Not only is he demanding a bigger pay, he has also pulled out numerous times in his fight, so he does not have a lot of leverage right now. The UFC could cut him if he keeps demanding more than what UFC offers him.
Meanwhile, props to Gastelum for taking the fight. He is always ready to fight despite coming off a tough loss against Whittaker. Although stylistically it a great matchup for Gastelum since he is a great boxer with granite chin. If he could handle Cannonier’s power he could pose problems to Cannonier’s game considering it is a five round fight.