Paulo Costa
The Eraser

Brazil

Booked again vs. Yoel Romero
MiddleweightUFC
May 8, 2019
Costa will take on Yoel Romero in a middleweight matchup at UFC 241 on Aug. 17 at the Honda Center in Anaheim.
ANALYSIS
This is a fight that had been previously booked on three separate occasions, but Romero has had several issues gaining medical clearance, while Costa was recently handed a retroactive USADA suspension due to a medication he had been using to address a stomach issue. That suspension has already passed, clearing "The Eraser" for a long-anticipated matchup with Romero later this summer. Costa has gotten off to a red-hot start to his MMA career, picking up four consecutive stoppage victories with his fists within the first two rounds. He's landing an astonishing 8.83 significant strikes per minute, though that number is likely to regress to the mean with a larger sample size. Romero will be his toughest test to date, as even at 42 years old, he's coming off a pair of fights for the ages against champion Robert Whittaker -- the most recent of which could have easily gone his way. Costa may be the slightly taller man and classically better striker, but Romero is an Olympic silver medalist in freestyle wrestling that took down the champion three times in their last bout. Costa does have a 81 percent takedown defense, but he was brought to the mat twice by the lesser Oluwale Bamgbose before coming back for the TKO win. Costa may have youth on his side, but any momentum built during the start of his UFC tenure will likely be halted by August, as it will be over a year between fights for the 28-year-old.
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Handed retroactive suspension
MiddleweightUFC
April 26, 2019
Costa was handed a six-month suspension retroactive to Aug. 10, 2018, by the USADA, Brett Okamoto of ESPN reports.
ANALYSIS
Even though Costa was caught by the USADA, the six months after Aug. 10, 2018, have already past so the suspension won't have an effect on his future fights. However, there is still controversy circling the Brazilian, who was originally scheduled to fight Yoel Romero on Saturday but was fined by the New York State Athletic Commission for an undisclosed violation that led to his removal from the bout.
Details of withdrawal released
MiddleweightUFC
April 10, 2019
Costa has been fined by the New York State Athletic Commission for an undisclosed violation that led to his eventual removal from UFC Fort Lauderdale on April 27, Guilherme Cruz of MMAFighting.com reports.
ANALYSIS
Rumors of Costa potentially testing positive for PEDs had been circulating since Yoel Romero's camp told ESPN radio in March that Costa was pulled from their schedule fight due to a USADA violation. Costa's camp has consistently denied that accusation, but now more of the details surrounding that circumstance have been made public. It seems Costa had been taking the medication Plasil to address stomach problems, and the use of that substance was not disclosed properly to the state of New York. As a result, the fighter will be fined $9,333, but not suspended. USADA will not comment on any open investigations, so it's unclear if a resolution remains in progress, though Costa's camp claims they are ready for a fight with Romero at any time this summer.
Won't fight Yoel Romero after all
MiddleweightUFC
March 7, 2019
Costa (undisclosed) is no longer scheduled to face Yoel Romero (orbital) at UFC Miami on April 27, ESPN's Brett Okamoto reports.
ANALYSIS
There have been numerous issues with scheduling Costa to fight Romero over the past few months, and UFC has now decided to remove Costa from the card for unknown reasons. It's currently unclear as to when Costa's next fight will take place.
New date set for Yoel Romero match
MiddleweightUFC
January 22, 2019
Costa (undisclosed) will finally face Yoel Romero (orbital) at UFC Miami on April 27, Aaron Bronsteter of TSN reports.
ANALYSIS
The matchup has already been scheduled and cancelled twice, first due to Romero's injury in November and then due to Costa's undisclosed injury in January. Assuming better luck this time around, Costa will be looking to extend his professional record to 13-0. He's never even had to go three rounds, winning in the first round in his first 10 fights (including nine before joining the UFC) and in the second round in his last three matches. His opponent, the 41-year-old Romero, has 14 years of experience on him but has been in a small slump, losing two of his last three matches.
Drops out of fight against Yoel Romero
MiddleweightUFC
November 7, 2018
Costa has withdrawn from his scheduled fight against Yoel Romero at UFC Brooklyn on Jan. 19 due to an undisclosed injury, MMAFighting.com reports.
ANALYSIS
The two were originally scheduled to fight at UFC 230 last week, but the bout was postponed after Romero wasn't medically cleared to compete. Now it's an injury to Costa that will keep the fight from taking place. Specifics regarding the issue remain unclear at this point, as does a timetable for his return.