Robert Whittaker vs Paulo Costa confirmed for UFC 284
by FARUK IMAMOVIC | VIEW 402
If you take a look at the UFC's middleweight rankings, you'll realize that Robert Whittaker didn't fight just one name in the top 5. It's Alex Pereira, who was pushed over the line into the top 5 anyway, just to make his title shot look like more justified.
In practice, Pereira should not be in the top based on his results. But back to Whittaker. The former middleweight champion fought the current champion Israel Adesanya twice, but lost both times. He defeated Jared Cannonier as the second-ranked challenger, and in the ninth month he defeated the currently third-ranked challenger Marvin Vettori.
The aforementioned Pereira is in fourth place, followed by Derek Brunson, whom Whittaker has also already beaten. He also beat ninth-ranked Darren Till and 11th-ranked Kelvin Gastelum.
It's a home fight for Robert Whittaker
So, Whittaker is constantly fighting top fighters, and he plans to add another high-ranked fighter to his resume.
Namely, Whittaker and sixth-ranked challenger Paulo Costa will fight next year at the UFC 284 event in Australia. Perth will host that event on February 11 (month 2), and the fight between Whittaker and Costa is the first officially confirmed fight for that spectacular event.
Whittaker will be looking for his second win in a row and fifth in his last six appearances in front of his home crowd. Paulo Costa also deserves respect for the opponents he has been battling against lately. The Brazilian has fought against Yoel Romero, Israel Adesanya, Marvin Vettori and Luke Rockhold, and now the second best fighter in the division is waiting for him.
Costa defeated Luke Rockhold in the eighth month and if he overcomes the obstacle in the form of Whittaker, it is likely that he would get a new "title shot". Whittaker could also make another shot at the title in the event of another win.
It should be noted that after the victory over Rockhold, Costa pointed out that he has one more fight left under his current contract with the UFC. The Brazilian expects a significant improvement, and if he has not already signed a new contract, he will be highly motivated to show himself in the best possible light against Whittaker, because this way his negotiating power will also increase.
The bottom line is that we are in for a fantastic match and the UFC's return to Australia started strong from the very beginning of the fight card.