Robert Whittaker vs Paulo Costa UFC Fight Night 190 on April 17, 2021 is the newest banger according to ESPN’s Brett Okamoto.
Both fighters have fought and lost via KO/TKO to the current Middleweight champ, Isreal Adesanya, which means this is most likely a fight to get back to the number one contender spot.
The fighters have yet to reach a final agreement to make the bout official.
Okamoto reported Costa has considered moving up to the light heavyweight division but will remain at the 185-pound limit to take on Whittaker.
Whittaker and Costa are the No. 1 and 2 middleweight challengers in UFC’s rankings, respectively.
Whittaker dropped the middleweight title to Israel Adesanya at UFC 243 in October 2019 but rebounded with victories over Darren Till and Jared Cannonier. Costa unsuccessfully challenged Adesanya for the title at UFC 253 in September, having won his first 13 professional fights.
Adesanya is fighting light heavyweight champion Jan Blachowicz at UFC 259 on March 6. Should he succeed, that casts significant doubt around the middleweight division since the unbeaten star could pursue another marquee opponent at the light heavyweight limit.
Regardless of what the future holds for Adesanya, the winner of Whittaker vs. Costa would seemingly be in line to get a championship opportunity the next time he steps inside the Octagon.