Paulo Costa

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Paulo Costa
Paulo Borrachinha em 2017
Costa in 2017
Born (1991-04-21) 21 April 1991 (age 30)
Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil
Other namesBorrachinha (The Eraser)
Height6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Weight205 lb (93 kg; 14.6 st)[1]
DivisionLight Heavyweight (2021–present) Middleweight (2012–2020)
Reach72 in (183 cm)
Fighting out ofBelo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil
TeamTeam Nogueira Champion Team
Clube Atlético Mineiro
Fight Ready (2017–present)[2]
TrainerEric Albarracin
RankBlack belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu[3]
Years active2012–present
Mixed martial arts record
By knockout11
By submission1
By decision1
By knockout1
By decision1
Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog

Paulo Henrique Costa (born 21 April 1991) is a Brazilian professional mixed martial artist. He currently fights as a Light Heavyweight[4] for the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). As of October 25, 2021, he is #5 in the UFC middleweight rankings.[5]


Costa, the son of odd-jobber Carlos Roberto and Maria Augusta, was born in 1991.[6] He has an older brother, Carlos Costa, who is a former mixed martial artist and one of Paulo's coaches.[6] Paulo grew up in Contagem playing football and eventually picking up Muay Thai at the age of nine in order to learn discipline and avoid street fights he was constantly getting into.[6] As a teenager, Paulo joined a jiu-jitsu gym with his brother only to quit the sport after their father died of throat cancer when Paulo was 17.[6] A couple of years later, Costa returned to jiu-jitsu and started competing under the tutelage of his brother who was already a purple belt at the time.[6]

In order to help his mother with bills, Costa worked in real estate and as an IT teacher teaching Microsoft Word and Microsoft Excel.[6]

Mixed martial arts career[edit]

Early career[edit]

Costa made his professional MMA debut in his native country of Brazil in February 2012. Eventually, his brother convinced their mother to support Paulo monetarily for a year in order to pursue his professional martial arts career.[6] Over the next five years, he amassed a record of 8–0 with 7 knockouts and 1 submission.[7]

The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil[edit]

Costa was chosen to be a fighter on The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil 3. In the opening elimination round, he defeated José Roberto via submission (guillotine choke) in the second round. Costa was the second middleweight fighter chosen by coach Wanderlei Silva. His next fight was against Márcio Alexandre Jr., and Costa lost via split decision after three rounds.[8]

Ultimate Fighting Championship[edit]

Costa made his promotional debut on 11 March 2017, at UFC Fight Night 106 against Garreth McLellan.[9] He won the fight via TKO in the first round, earning his first Performance of the Night award.[10]

Costa faced Oluwale Bamgbose on 3 June 2017, at UFC 212.[11] He won the fight via TKO in the second round.[12]

After the fight with Bamgbose, UFC offered a new contract but the parties did not come to an agreement with the financial terms. The UFC then proposed a fight with former welterweight champion Johny Hendricks, with a promise to renegotiate after the bout.[13] Costa faced Hendricks on 4 November 2017, at UFC 217.[14] He won the fight via TKO in the second round.[15] After the bout Costa signed a new, multi-fight contract.[13]

Costa was expected to face Uriah Hall on 21 April 2018, at UFC Fight Night 128.[16] However, Costa pulled out of the fight in mid-March with an arm injury.[17] In turn, promotion officials elected to pull Hall from that event entirely and reschedule the pairing for 7 July 2018, at UFC 226.[18] Costa won the fight via technical knockout in round two.[19] The win earned him his second Performance of the Night award.[20]

Costa was scheduled to face Yoel Romero on 3 November 2018, at UFC 230.[21] However, Romero indicated in mid-August that, while he had been cleared to fight, his medics had recommended that he wait another four to five months to allow facial injuries incurred during his most recent fight to fully heal.[22]

The bout was rescheduled again, and was expected to take place on 27 April 2019, at UFC on ESPN 3.[23] Costa was removed from the card for an undisclosed reason.[24] He was replaced by Ronaldo Souza.[25] Romero then pulled out of the fight due to pneumonia, and Costa was scheduled to face Souza, but a United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) investigation prevented Costa from participating, so neither Romero nor Costa competed in the event.[26]

It was revealed that Costa had been suspended for six months by USADA and Comissão Atlética Brasileira de MMA (CABMMA) for receiving prohibited intravenous infusions (IV) more than 100 mL in 12 hours after the weigh-ins in June 2017 at UFC 212 against Oluwale Bamgbose and November 2017 at UFC 217 against Johny Hendricks. Costa was fined a third of his purse of the fights, which were reverted to his opponents. The suspension was retroactive to 10 August 2018, and Costa was eligible to fight again in February 2019.[27][28] On 23 March 2020, Lucas Penchel MSc, who provided the infusions in question, accepted a two-year ban from USADA, starting on 13 March 2020.[29]

Costa finally faced Romero on 17 August 2019, at UFC 241.[30] He won the fight via unanimous decision.[31] This fight earned him the Fight of the Night award.[32]

On the strength of his five fight win streak in the UFC, Costa faced Israel Adesanya for the UFC Middleweight Championship on 27 September 2020 at UFC 253.[33] He lost the fight via technical knockout in the second round, making this his first professional loss.[34]

Costa was scheduled to face Robert Whittaker on 17 April 2021 at UFC on ESPN 22.[35] However, on 16 March Costa withdrew from the fight due to illness.[36]

Costa was scheduled to face Jared Cannonier on 21 August 2021 at UFC on ESPN 28.[37] However on 4 June, Costa withdrew from the bout due to unknown reasons.[38] Costa later claimed he never signed the bout agreement and cited issues with his payment, while not confirming them as the reason for his withdrawal.[39]

Costa faced Marvin Vettori in a light heavyweight bout on 23 October 2021 at UFC Fight Night 196. Originally scheduled as a middleweight contest, and briefly a catchweight bout, Costa received widespread criticism for showing up twenty five pounds over the middleweight limit.[40][41] Costa lost the fight via unanimous decision.[42]

Championships and accomplishments[edit]

Mixed martial arts record[edit]

Professional record breakdown
15 matches 13 wins 2 losses
By knockout 11 1
By submission 1 0
By decision 1 1
Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Loss 13–2 Marvin Vettori Decision (unanimous) UFC Fight Night: Costa vs. Vettori 23 October 2021 5 5:00 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Light Heavyweight debut. Costa was deducted 1 point in Round 2 due to an eye poke.
Loss 13–1 Israel Adesanya TKO (punches and elbows) UFC 253 27 September 2020 2 3:59 Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates For the UFC Middleweight Championship.
Win 13–0 Yoel Romero Decision (unanimous) UFC 241 17 August 2019 3 5:00 Anaheim, California, United States Fight of the Night.
Win 12–0 Uriah Hall TKO (punches) UFC 226 7 July 2018 2 2:38 Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Performance of the Night.
Win 11–0 Johny Hendricks TKO (punches) UFC 217 4 November 2017 2 1:23 New York City, New York, United States
Win 10–0 Oluwale Bamgbose TKO (punches) UFC 212 3 June 2017 2 1:06 Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Win 9–0 Garreth McLellan TKO (punches) UFC Fight Night: Belfort vs. Gastelum 11 March 2017 1 1:17 Fortaleza, Brazil Performance of the Night.
Win 8–0 Adriano Balby de Araujo KO (punch) Jungle Fight 90 3 September 2016 1 3:25 São Paulo, Brazil Defended the Jungle Fight Middleweight Championship.
Win 7–0 Eduardo Ramón Submission (rear-naked choke) Jungle Fight 87 21 May 2016 1 2:40 São Paulo, Brazil Won the vacant Jungle Fight Middleweight Championship.
Win 6–0 Bruno Assis TKO (punches) Jungle Fight 84 5 December 2015 1 1:17 São Paulo, Brazil
Win 5–0 Wagner Silva Gomes TKO (punches) FTF 11 24 April 2015 1 4:37 Rio de Janeiro, Brazil Won the vacant Face to Face Middleweight Championship.
Win 4–0 Gérson da Conceição TKO (doctor stoppage) FTF 9 19 December 2014 1 5:00 Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Win 3–0 Fábio Moreira TKO (punches) BH Fight: MMA Grand Prix 1 November 2013 1 1:26 Belo Horizonte, Brazil
Win 2–0 Ademilson Borges TKO (punches) Upper Fight: MMA Championship 2 15 June 2013 1 0:32 Teófilo Otoni, Brazil
Win 1–0 Téo Esteves TKO (punches) MMA Total Combat: Santa Luzia 5 February 2012 1 2:08 Santa Luzia, Brazil Middleweight debut.


Res. Record Opponent Method Event Date Round Time Location Notes
Loss 1–1 Márcio Alexandre Jr. Decision (split) The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil 3 20 April 2014 (airdate) 3 5:00 São Paulo, Brazil The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil 3 Quarterfinal Round.
Win 1–0 José Roberto Submission (guillotine choke) 9 March 2014 (airdate) 2 N/A The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil 3 Elimination Round.

Pay-per-view bouts[edit]

Event Fight Date Venue City PPV buys
UFC 253 Adesanya vs. Costa 27 September 2020 Flash Forum Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates 700,000[47]

See also[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^ Brett Okamoto (25 September 2020). "UFC 253: Paulo Costa's incredible UFC journey, as told by those who know him". ESPN.
  3. ^ Kaue Macedo (2 September 2016). "Promessa brasileira no peso médio, Paulo Borrachinha lidera card do Jungle Fight 90" (in Portuguese). Nocaute na Rede.
  4. ^ "Paulo Borrachinha". UFC. Retrieved 17 June 2017.
  5. ^ "Rankings | UFC". Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g Guilherme Cruz (17 August 2019). "'Troublemaker': Paulo Costa's endless quest for greatness".
  7. ^ "Paulo Henrique". Sherdog. Retrieved 17 June 2017.
  8. ^ Chiappetta, Mike. "Unbeaten Knockout Machine Paulo Borrachinha Carries Hopes of Brazil's UFC Future". Bleacher Report. Retrieved 14 May 2020.
  9. ^ "Garreth McLellan quickly replaces Alex Nicholson at UFC Fight Night 106". MMA Junkie. 20 January 2017. Retrieved 20 January 2017.
  10. ^ Ben Fowlkes (11 March 2017). "UFC Fight Night 106 results: Paulo Borrachinha thrashes Garreth McLellan for 77-second debut TKO". Retrieved 11 March 2017.
  11. ^ Tristen Critchfield (29 March 2017). "Paulo 'Borrachinha,' Oluwale Bamgbose to clash at UFC 212 in Rio de Janeiro". Retrieved 29 March 2017.
  12. ^ Dave Doyle (3 June 2017). "UFC 212 results: Paulo Borrachinha blasts Oluwale Bamgbose". Retrieved 3 June 2017.
  13. ^ a b Guilherme Cruz (31 August 2018). "Paulo Costa gambled with the UFC on contract negotiation — and won".
  14. ^ Staff (9 August 2017). "Former champion Johny Hendricks set to meet Brazil's Paulo Borrachinha at UFC 217". Retrieved 9 August 2017.
  15. ^ "UFC 217 results: Paulo Costa stops Johny Hendricks with strikes". Bloody Elbow. Retrieved 5 November 2017.
  16. ^ Keith Shillan (7 February 2018). "Uriah Hall vs Paulo Borrachinha in the works for UFC in Atlantic City". Retrieved 7 February 2018.
  17. ^ Staff (13 March 2018). "Biceps injury knocks Paulo Costa out of fight with Uriah Hall at UFC-Atlantic City". Retrieved 13 March 2018.
  18. ^ Michael Fiedel (18 April 2018). "According to Paulo Costa his fight with Uriah Hall rebooked for UFC 226". Retrieved 18 April 2018.[permanent dead link]
  19. ^ "UFC 226 results: Paulo Costa decimates Uriah Hall for TKO victory". MMAjunkie. 8 July 2018. Retrieved 8 July 2018.
  20. ^ Staff (7 July 2018). "TUF 27 Finale bonuses: 'Violent Bob Ross' Luis Pena gets a happy accident worth $50k". Retrieved 7 July 2018.
  21. ^ Mark La Monica (24 July 2018). "Paulo Costa vs. Yoel Romero set for UFC 230 at Madison Square Garden". Retrieved 24 July 2018.
  22. ^ Ariel Helwani (20 August 2018). "Yoel Romero: Doctor says I need 4-5 months to heal before next fight". Retrieved 21 August 2018.
  23. ^ Adam Guillen Jr. (22 January 2019). "Yoel Romero vs Paulo Costa targeted as UFC on ESPN 3 headliner on April 27 in Miami". Retrieved 23 January 2019.
  24. ^ Lee, Alexander K. (4 April 2019). "Yoel Romero out of UFC Fort Lauderdale main event". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 14 May 2020.
  25. ^ Marcelo Russio (4 April 2019). "Romero gets sick and UFC plans Paulo Borrachinha vs. Ronaldo Jacaré in Fort Lauderdale" (in Portuguese). Retrieved 4 April 2019.
  26. ^ Raimondi, Marc (26 April 2019). "Paulo Costa suspended six months by USADA for prohibited IV use". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 14 May 2020.
  27. ^ Baldwin, Nick (27 April 2019). "UFC's Paulo Costa used 'substantial assistance' clause to get reduced USADA suspension". Bloody Elbow. Retrieved 30 April 2019.
  28. ^ "Paulo Costa accepts six-month USADA suspension, receives fines for IV use". MMA Junkie. 26 April 2019. Retrieved 30 April 2019.
  29. ^ Mike Bohn (23 March 2020). "Doctor who gave IVs to UFC's Paulo Costa gets two-year USADA suspension".
  30. ^ Jesse Holland (7 May 2019). "Yoel Romero vs Paulo Costa rebooked for UFC 241 in Anaheim". Retrieved 8 May 2019.
  31. ^ Anderson, Jay (17 August 2019). "UFC 241 Results: Yoel Romero and Paulo Costa Slug It Out in Barn-Burner". Cageside Press. Retrieved 18 August 2019.
  32. ^ a b Haynes, Stephie (18 August 2019). "UFC 241 post-fight bonuses: Romero-Costa war nabs FOTN honors". Bloody Elbow. Retrieved 18 August 2019.
  33. ^ title-fight-set-sept-19-ufc-253 "Sources: UFC sets Adesanya-Costa for Sept. 19" Check |url= value (help). 18 July 2020. Retrieved 19 July 2020.
  34. ^ "UFC 253 updates: Adesanya defeats Costa". NewsComAu. 27 September 2020. Retrieved 27 September 2020.
  35. ^ Alexander, Mookie (25 January 2021). "Robert Whittaker vs. Paulo Costa set for UFC main event on April 17". Bloody Elbow. Retrieved 26 January 2021.
  36. ^ Guilherme Cruz (16 March 2021). "Paulo Costa ill, unable to fight Robert Whittaker at April 17 UFC event". Retrieved 16 March 2021.
  37. ^ Brett Okamoto (12 May 2021). "Paulo Costa-Jared Cannonier bout being finalized to headline UFC Fight Night in August". Retrieved 12 May 2021.
  38. ^ Alexander K. Lee and Damon Martin (5 June 2021). "Paulo Costa out, Kelvin Gastelum steps in to fight Jared Cannonier in Aug. 21 UFC main event". Retrieved 5 June 2021.
  39. ^ Alexander K. Lee (5 June 2021). "Paulo Costa says he never signed contract for Jared Cannonier fight, claims 'YouTubers' are exposing issues with fighter pay". Retrieved 5 June 2021.
  40. ^ Marrocco, Steven (2 August 2021). "Paulo Costa vs. Marvin Vettori headlines Oct. 23 UFC event". MMA Fighting. Retrieved 3 August 2021.
  41. ^ "Marvin Vettori, Paulo Costa Agree to Meet at 205 Pounds for UFC Fight Night 196 Headliner". Sherdog. Retrieved 22 October 2021.
  42. ^ Law, Eddie (23 October 2021). "UFC Vegas 41 Results: Marvin Vettori Defeats Paulo Costa via Decision". Cageside Press. Retrieved 23 October 2021.
  43. ^ "UFC Fight Night 106 bonuses: With no 'Fight of Night,' who took home the 4 performance honors?". MMAjunkie. 12 March 2017. Retrieved 4 November 2017.
  44. ^ "UFC 226 bonuses: Daniel Cormier, not surprisingly, among $50,000 winners in Vegas". MMAjunkie. 8 July 2018. Retrieved 8 July 2018.
  45. ^ "MMA Junkie's 'Fight of the Month' for August: Middleweights meet expectations". 2 September 2019.
  46. ^ "Paulo Henrique". Sherdog. Retrieved 17 August 2019.
  47. ^ Coppinger, Mike. "Sources: UFC 253 generated more than 700,000 PPV buys globally". The Athletic. Retrieved 2 October 2020.

External links[edit]