As an undefeated middleweight prospect, Paulo Henrique Costa feels confident about his abilities. With 11 stoppage wins under his belt, ‘Borrachinha’ told Combate he does not believe there’s any striker that could be a match for him in the UFC’s 185 pounds division.
Scheduled for a fight against fellow powerful striker Uriah Hall, Costa says he’s completely focused on his upcoming bout, however he claims to be able to knock out anyone in the division.
“I’m completely focused on my next fight, I’m not thinking about what comes afterwards,” Costa said. “All I think about is knocking him out quickly. I believe I can knock out pretty much anybody in the division. I considered Luke Rockhold a great future opponent, but he’s moving up. I don’t think there’s a single striker who can stop me in this weight class.”
As for the Hall fight, Costa sums it up as a classic duel of strikers, but emphasizes being ready for any scenario that could come up during the bout. To illustrate, Borrachinha explained that UFC flyweight contender and Olympic gold medalist, Henry Cejudo, is helping him improve his wrestling skills.
“Myself and Hall are very alike, but I think I’m more powerful and explosive than he is,” he said. “He’s a bit more patient, but apart from that, we’re both strikers. But I’m thinking ahead. I’m thinking about taking on a wrestler later on, or a jiu-jitsu guy who can wrestle. I think I must know how not to be taken down if I don’t want to. Wrestling is what dictates the fight, that’s why I got Eric Albarracin and Henry Cejudo in this camp, which is incredible. Any fighter who wants to be a champion has to know how to wrestle, to strike and to fight on the ground.”
Paulo Henrique Costa is expected to take on Uriah Hall at UFC 226, on July 7, in Las Vegas, Nevada. The card will be headlined by a super fight between heavyweight champion, Stipe Miocic, and light heavyweight titleholder, Daniel Cormier.