UFC fight night Cannonier vs Costa has been shaken up as the former title challenger and middleweight contender Paulo Costa has withdrawn from his scheduled match on August 21 due to contractual issues. A replacement was found in former TUF winner Kelvin Gastellum who steps in for Paulo in the main event of the Las Vegas card.
Paulo has been extremely vocal especially on his Twitter in which he claims the UFC is underpaying him as he believes he should be making main event money for his fights, he went as far as claiming the organization had scheduled him against Cannonier before he even agreed or signed a contract and that Youtuber’s are showing how disgraceful the business side of MMA contracts are. While this is sure to bring the ire of UFC president Dana White, we wait for further word on how the UFC plans to move on from this incident.
The last time Costa stepped in the octagon was last year where the Brazilian fighter suffered his first professional and knockout loss to middleweight champion Israel Adesanya. Before this loss, Paulo was riding a 13 fight win streak that saw him beat the likes of Yoel Romero, Uriah Hall, and Johnny Hendricks and establish himself as one of the most feared strikers in his weight class, Paulo has been dealing with some health issues as he had a fight against Robert Whittaker that fell through last April.
It is unfortunate to see such a promising main event fall through, but considering a fighter like Kelvin Gastellum was willing to step in and face a powerful striker as Jared Cannonier makes for yet another intriguing event. Both fighters are oddly enough coming off losses against former middleweight champion Robert Whittaker and looking to bounce back in a division that is stacked with contenders.