Paulo Costa will no longer be fighting former UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker on April 17 as previously planned.
After initial report from Ag.Fight suggested that the Costa vs. Whittaker bout was in jeopardy, MMAFighting has since confirmed that ‘The Eraser’ will no longer be competing at UFC Fight Night 188.
According to the report, Costa is dealing with a severe flu and can’t fully prepare for the high stakes middleweight contest.
Paulo Costa has not stepped foot inside the Octagon since suffering the first loss of his career to reigning UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya at UFC 253. Prior to the setback, the hard-hitting Brazilian had gone a perfect 13-0, which included twelve finishes.
Meanwhile, Robert Whittaker (22-5 MMA) is coming off back-to-back unanimous decision victories over Darren Till and Jared Cannonier in his most recent efforts. Those victories were of course preceded by his TKO loss to Israel Adesanya, where he surrendered his middleweight strap.
Paulo Costa vs. Robert Whittaker was set to headline next month’s UFC Fight Night 188 event on April 17. The promotion has not revealed if they will look to keep ‘The Reaper’ on the card or just postpone his fight with Costa to a later date.
‘The Eraser’ has yet to issue a formal statement regarding his removal from his slated fight with Robert Whittaker, but one can only anticipate that will come soon.
Hopefully the Brazilian knockout artist can make a quick recovery and return to full health in timely fashion so that this highly anticipated fight can be rebooked.
Do you think the UFC will look to keep Robert Whittaker on the April 17 fight card now that Paulo Costa has been forced out of their slated fight? Share your thoughts in the comment section PENN Nation!