Paulo Costa has accepted a six month punishment from the USADA.
The rising UFC middleweight agreed to a six-month suspension from USADA (U.S. Anti-Doping Agency) for violations in June and November of 2017. The suspensions were handed down August 10, 2018 and expired on February 10, 2019.
According to their press release, Paulo Costa took an IV of more than 100 mL during a 12-hour period after making weight for his fight against Oluwale Bamgbose at UFC 212 in March of 2017. This also occurred at UFC 217 in November of the same year, after he made weight for his fight with Johny Hendricks. In addition to Costa, a member of his team Carlos Costa has also been issued a six-month suspension for aiding in the unapproved IV. Here’s the statement released by USADA.
Paulo Costa’s use of a prohibited method on June 2, 2017 also falls under the jurisdiction of the Comissão Atlética Brasileira de MMA (CABMMA), which has recognized USADA’s sanction and will additionally fine Paulo $4,000 (1/3 of the UFC 212 purse), all of which will revert to his opponent in UFC 212. In addition, the New York State Athletic Commission has resolved Paulo Costa’s case arising from the November 3, 2017, IV with no period of ineligibility and a $9,333.33 fine (1/3 of the UFC 217 purse). Neither Commission will impose any additional sanction on Carlos Costa.
Costa (12-0) has had an impressive start to his UFC career finishing all four of his opponents by knockout. The 28-year-old last fought at UFC 226 in July 2018, where he defeated Uriah Hall via TKO in the second round. The Brazilian fighter has never gone the distance in his career. Paulo Costa was rumored to be facing Yoel Romero initially on tonight’s UFC Fort Lauderdale card. However, with Romero injured and Costa having his dealings with USADA, the fight never materialized. No word on if that fight will be rescheduled.