Scheduled for October 21 at Abu Dhabi’s Etihad Arena, this non-title bout has been on the UFC’s radar for their annual return to Abu Dhabi since the beginning of 2023. However, according to Costa, Chimaev tried his best to avoid this match-up, reaching out to other fighters like Leon Edwards, Belal Muhammad, and Kamaru Usman, who belong to lower weight divisions, in an attempt to dodge the challenge of facing a genuine middleweight like Costa.
The animosity between Costa and Chimaev stems from an incident in 2022 when Chimaev was preparing to fight Nate Diaz. At the UFC Performance Institute, Chimaev caught Costa’s attention with his intense stares, leading to a confrontation where Costa expressed his desire to fight him. This altercation sparked an ongoing war of words between the two fighters, both online and in interviews.
Despite the animosity, Costa acknowledges Chimaev’s skills as a fighter and appreciates the hype he brings to the contest, even if he finds some of Chimaev’s statements nonsensical. Costa is confident in his abilities and predicts that the fight will end with a first-round knockout. He views Chimaev as an explosive and energetic opponent, making a knockout victory more appealing than a submission win, even though Costa is a skilled black belt.
As the bout approaches, tensions are running high, and both fighters are expected to bring their A-game to the press conference and the fight itself. Chimaev has been on a dominant run through the welterweight and middleweight divisions since joining the UFC in 2020, but Costa is determined to tell a different story and prove himself in this highly intense and intriguing match-up.
Given the uncertainty surrounding the middleweight title picture, with contenders like Dricus Du Plessis and Sean Strickland vying for a shot at Israel Adesanya, Costa believes that a decisive victory over Chimaev could position him at the front of the line for a title shot.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about UFC 294
Q: When and where will the fight between Paulo Costa and Khamzat Chimaev take place?
A: The fight between Paulo Costa and Khamzat Chimaev is scheduled for October 21 at Abu Dhabi’s Etihad Arena as part of UFC 294.
Q: Why is this fight highly anticipated among UFC fans?
A: The match-up between Costa and Chimaev is highly anticipated due to their intense middleweight grudge match and the animosity that has been building between them.
Q: Did Chimaev try to avoid fighting Costa?
A: Yes, according to Paulo Costa, Chimaev attempted to avoid the fight by reaching out to other fighters from lower weight divisions, but the UFC ultimately made this match-up happen.
Q: What sparked the bad blood between Costa and Chimaev?
A: The animosity between the two fighters began in 2022 when Chimaev was preparing to fight Nate Diaz at UFC 279, and an altercation occurred between Costa and Chimaev at the UFC Performance Institute.
Q: How does Costa predict the fight will end?
A: Paulo Costa predicts that the fight will end with a first-round knockout in his favor.
Q: How does Costa view Chimaev’s fighting style?
A: Costa describes Chimaev as an explosive and energetic fighter, which is why he prefers to go for a knockout victory rather than a submission win.
Q: What are Costa’s thoughts on Chimaev’s trash-talking?
A: Costa finds some of Chimaev’s statements nonsensical and views him as a unique character who brings hype to the fight.
Q: What are the implications of this fight for the middleweight division?
A: With the middleweight title picture uncertain, Costa believes that a decisive victory over Chimaev could position him as a top contender for a shot at the title.
More about UFC 294
- “UFC 294: Paulo Costa vs. Khamzat Chimaev Set for Oct. 21 in Abu Dhabi” (MMA Fighting)
- “Paulo Costa Reveals Origin of Beef with Khamzat Chimaev” (The MMA Hour)
- “Khamzat Chimaev’s Trash Talk Continues Ahead of UFC 294 Clash with Paulo Costa” (MMA Junkie)
- “Paulo Costa Expects First-Round KO in UFC 294 Showdown with Khamzat Chimaev” (BJPenn.com)
- “Paulo Costa’s Victory Over Luke Rockhold at UFC 278” (UFC.com)