UFC 253 is almost upon us and fight fans are excited to see the promotion make their return to Fight Island. Chiefly, the main event for the pay-per-view will see Israel Adesanya square off against the Brazilian challenger in Paulo Costa. The aforementioned fight is many months in the making and both fighters will finally settle their score.
Israel Adesanya will look to defend his gold strap for the second time this calendar year on September 26, 2020. He faced off against Yoel Romero in his first defence after Costa suffered a bicep injury. Although the fight against Yoel was lacklustre, to say the least, the upcoming main event at UFC 253 will be anything but.
The most prominent narrative heading into the fight is the sheer stylistic enigma that the Middleweight bout provides. The fight is expected to play out on the feet and takedown attempts seem far from likely. What’s more, the fight has been touted to be a lock for “Fight of the Year” by UFC boss Dana White.
UFC 253: Israel Adesanya vs Paulo Costa
Israel Adesanya [19-0] is a high-level counter striker with an extensive background of around 80 kickboxing fights. Additionally, he has managed to integrate takedown defence, submission attempts from the guard and the like into his arsenal. In a fight with a pressuring Costa, “The Last Stylebender” is sure to play off his back-foot and look to keep the fight at range. Not to mention, Paulo Costa has shown weakness to a powerful jab when he faced Uriah Hall.
“The Eraser” [13-0] is sure to bring the fight to Israel Adesanya and the fight is slated to play out like a bull vs a matador. Costa swings heavy with bad intentions and has crippling power at 185-pounds. Not to mention, he usually enters the cage come Fight Night in the 215-pound range. He is a force in the starting moments and is a dangerous campaigner early in the fight.
Furthermore, Paulo Costa has shown that he’s willing to absorb punishment in order to dish it out. He will be expected to trade in the pocket and being tentative is seemingly not in his vocabulary. However, his cardio as the fight progresses will certainly be a point of concern. Paulo Costa is susceptible to a counter shot especially as he hasn’t always exhibited defensive responsibility.
There is no room for error when facing a veteran striker like Adesanya and Paulo Costa’s bullish tenacity could be his undoing.
Prediction: Israel Adesanya to claim a fourth-round TKO finish
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