Israel Adesanya shares prediction for Robert Whittaker vs. Paulo Costa at UFC 298

By Cole Shelton - February 14, 2024

Former UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya has shared his prediction for the UFC 298 co-main event between Robert Whittaker and Paulo Costa.

Israel Adesanya, Robert Whittaker, Paulo Costa

Adesanya has fought both men, defeating Whittaker twice, once by decision and once by knockout, while also beating Costa by knockout. Given his familiarity with both fighters, ‘The Last Stylebender’ seems to have a good idea of how the bout will play out on Saturday night in Anaheim, as he expects Whittaker to wrestle the Brazilian.

“Stylistically, I will say I think Rob’s gonna wrestle him. Rob can definitely land the takedown. Maybe not early on. Early on, I think it’d be f*****g hard. Rob will be at the distance. Faint pump faking doing this f*****g oblique kick. Costa will, I don’t think he’ll try and bait Rob or anything like that. I think he’ll go to Rob,” Israel Adesanya said on his YouTube channel. “I think he might not respect Rob unless Rob gets some respect straight away with the jab or his leg kicks or right hand or something. Costa will try and walk him down. If Rob’s smart, don’t get to the fence because that’s when he will bully you. Use good footwork.

“If Rob ends up behind the black line, that’s when Costa’s gonna put that pressure and just try and body work it, cause he does his best work when people are on the fence. Footwork from Rob to stay away from the fence. Costa to win, he just has to maybe, he doesn’t really mix it up, he barely kicks like low kicks or anything. He likes to box, boxing heavy. I think it means well for Rob because that’s very limited,” Adesanya continued.

With Israel Adesanya expecting Robert Whittaker to wrestle Paulo Costa, he believes the Aussie will get the job done, and likely by decision.

“I feel Rob will win by decision, UD. He’s gonna land a couple of takedowns. Depends who shows up. He might rock Costa up, but I don’t think so,” Adesanya concluded.

Should Robert Whittaker get the win over Paulo Costa at UFC 298 as Israel Adesanya predicts, the Aussie would be right back in the title picture at middleweight.

As for Adesanya, he hasn’t fought since he lost his middleweight title to Sean Strickland last September and doesn’t have his next fight booked.