Even though we were all doubting in the beginning, it seems like UFC is winning the fight against the pandemic. While the whole world and most of the sports are on hold, the MMA game is stronger than ever. And, the UFC is back with yet another amazing fight card, stacked from top to bottom. The UFC 253: Adesanya vs. Costa is reset for September 26, 2020, and the fights will take place at UFC APEX center in Las Vegas, Nevada, US. The main event will see the highly awaited middleweight title fight between Israel Adesanya and Paulo Costa.
When is the UFC 253?
UFC 253 is rescheduled for Saturday, September 26, 2020, at UFC APEX center in Las Vegas, Nevada, in the United States.
Who is the headliner for UFC 253 event?
UFC has announced early in Sunday, the UFC 253 is going to be the Middleweight Championship bout, and running champion Israel Adesanya vs. Paulo Costa is expected for the headline of the main event.
What time does the main event actually start?
UFC 253 main events between Adesanya vs. Costa will start at 11.30 p.m. ET (Approximate).
UFC 253: Background
The two stars of the UFC 253 main event have been on each other’s radar and collision course for some time now. The UFC lined them up much earlier and they nearly faced each other at UFC 248. But, Costa had to pull out from the bout due to injury he had in training.
So instead of Costa, Adesanya defended his title against Yoel Romero. Yet, this ended up being one of the most boring fights in the history of the division. Many fans were furious at Adesanya and there is pressure on him to put on a show against Costa.
The best thing about this fight is these two just can’t stand one another. Unlike in some other matchups, the hate between these two is not fake and they do really hate each other.
UFC Profile: Israel Adesanya
Israel Adesanya is once in a lifetime athlete and the most exciting fighter in modern MMA. What he was able to achieve in less than two years with the UFC is utterly amazing. He went from fighting on the prelims to winning the UFC middleweight belt in 20 months. That’s just insane and shows you how skilled and gifted Adesanya is.
He is coming into the fight against Costa as the undefeated 185lbs UFC champ. And if he beats Costa, we may start looking at him as one of the greatest middleweights ever.
Things you must know about Adesanya:
- He is the most dynamic striker on the UFC roster who has amazing Muay Thai skills. His striking defense is very good as he rarely absorbs any damage.
- Adesanya can fight from both stances which combined with the faints he’s throwing makes him very unpredictable.
- Out of 19 wins, Adesanya has scored an amazing 14 KOs
- He holds a record for the most knockdowns in a UFC title Fight (4)
Despite the win, Adesanya failed to deliver in his last fight against Romero. The hype around this fight was huge, but it ended up being a massive disappointment. So we believe Adesanya will be very aggressive against Costa and looking to put on a show for the fans.
UFC Profile: Paulo Costa
Paulo Costa is, perhaps, the hardest puncher in the history of 185lbs division. We can’t recall when was the last time we saw a fighter powerful as he is. I mean, Costa has scored 11 great KOs out of 13 wins, and like Israel, he is also undefeated.
On his road to success, he left nothing but carnage inside the UFC cage and it seems like this title opportunity couldn’t come at the better moment for him. And according to Costa, he matches against Adesanya well.
Things to know about Costa:
- Costa is the biggest in size and the most powerful 185lbs fighter in the world.
- Despite being big, Costa is very fast and can close the distance in a split second.
- He has huge power in both wrists and is a true KO artist.
- His boxing skills are very technical and he has great kicking skills as well.
- On top of that, Costa is a durable fighter and can absorb a lot of damage as seen against Romero.
Like Adesanya, Costa’s last fight was also against Romero. But this fight was much more exciting and it showed Costa is ready for the top. After a brutal war against Romero, Costa went on to take one year off to rest and prepare for Adesanya. We may expect Costa to come into this fight healthy and in the best shape of his life.
UFC 253 Adesanya vs. Costa: Fight Preview
A matchup between Adesanya and Costa is a true definition of the term “Styles make fights”. Both are elite fighters with each one having their own pros and cons.
Looking at their styles, this will be a pure standup fight. Both fighters have great striking skills and they can close the show with a single punch.
Who has a better striking?
Adesanya is by far more complete striker in this matchup. He is the most dynamic striker on the UFC roster and is very unpredictable.
People forget that he has a strong background in kickboxing. He was the “King in the Ring” winner many times. And, he even went on to win the Glory 34 tournament a year before he made his MMA debut. I mean, his Muay Thai is the best in the business, period.
Everything he does on the feet is precise and has a great timing behind. He has a high reach of 80″ he uses to keep the distance and attack with the 48% striking accuracy. As said earlier, he rarely absorbs any damage as he has a great standup defense of 65% and absorbs around 2.4 strikes per minute.
On the other side, Costa is a true power puncher and he only needs one shot to partially land to knock his opponents out. Further, he is very explosive, and can quickly close the distance despite having such a massive size.
Costa is less accurate with his strikes compared to Adesanya (58% accuracy), but, he has a much bigger output. Yet, we must take these numbers with reserve as Costa mainly ends his rivals inside the first round. He has a much shorter reach of 71” and a poor striking defense. He absorbs around 6.4 strikes per minute which is a lot.
Who has a better grappling?
Paulo Costa has a much underrated grappling game, and as a black belt in BJJ, he is a better grappler in this matchup on paper. In his UFC career, we haven’t seen Costa attempting a takedown or initiating a grappling exchange.
But, he has all the skills to advance to the mat and submit his opponents. Further, we saw him landing some brutal ground and pound in some of his earlier fights. Not to mention that Costa has a strong takedown defense of 80%.
We don’t expect from Costa to shoot for a takedown against Adesanya. But this may be his way out if things are not working on the feet.
Adesanya doesn’t have any type of wrestling or BJJ background. But we can see improvements in his takedown defense with every fight and it’s very hard to take him down. Even Romero, who was an Olympic silver medalist in wrestling, had a hard time taking Adesanya down.
Who will win and why?
Adesanya vs. Costa is one of those fights that are very hard to predict. Even though they are both strikers, the way they perform is quite different. But we expect nothing but fireworks in this fight and there’s a good chance we will see a knockout.
In our opinion, Adesanya has more chances to win this fight. He can make up for the lack of size and strength with an insane striking speed he has. And as said earlier, he is a better striker.
We can expect him to come out using great footwork to stay away from Costa’s power and let the Brazilian punch himself out in the first round. Further, Adesanya will tire Costa out even more by targeting the body with vicious kicks.
He will take over from the second or third round, and we predict he will stop Costa in the fourth round. You see, Costa has never fought in a five-round fight and people are overlooking this fact. We doubt Costa has a gas tank to match Adesanya’s pace for five rounds.
What are the odds?
Israel Adesanya will come into his second title defense as a -165 favorite. This means that a $165 bet on Adesanya to win would win you $100 which is a decent bet. On the other side, Costa will be a +140 underdog for the first time in his UFC career. By placing a $100 bet on Costa, you can win $140.
But, we must say that both fighters are true finishers. They don’t like each other and, for sure, they will try to knock each other out from the opening second of the fight. So, consider placing your bet that a fight will end in a knockout.
UFC 253 fight card
UFC Middleweight Championship: Israel Adesanya (c) vs Paulo Costa
Women’s Strawweight: Randa Markos vs Mackenzie Dern
Featherweight: Hakeem Dawodu vs Zubaira Tukhugov
Heavyweight: Shamil Abdurakhimov vs Ciryl Gane
Bantamweight: Casey Kenney vs Heili Alateng
Flyweight: Jordan Espinosa vs David Dvořák
Light Heavyweight: Johnny Walker vs Ryan Spann
How to watch UFC 253?
The preliminary card kicks off at 2:00 AM CEST and you can watch it live, along with the early prelims on UFC Fight Pass. You can subscribe to the UFC Fight Pass for $11.99 per month or save up to two months by choosing an annual option for $114.99.
The main card starts at 4:00 AM CEST, and you can watch it on ESPN+. For the one who doesn’t know, ESPN has been the official broadcaster of the UFC events since 2019. To watch the UFC 253, you must subscribe to the ESPN+ for $4.99 per month or get two months free by choosing the annual option that comes at $49.99. But, to watch the main card, you also need to pay extra for the pay-per-view which costs around $65 for a single event.
Yet, there is a cheaper and better option. The ESPN+ offers a special ESPN+PPV bundle that allows you to stream the pay-per-view events. This is a very good deal because it includes the upcoming UFC event for $64.99 and one year of ESPN+ for $84.99. So by choosing this special bundle, you will save around %25 of your money.
For this price, you will also get three simultaneous streams. And the platform covers all the standard devices, including the game consoles.