One-time UFC middleweight title challenger, Paulo Costa has claimed that the outspoken contender, Sean Strickland refused to fight him next – labelling him a “p*ssy” and a “fake macho” – leading to an inevitable response from the latter.
Costa, who has been out of action since a November main event against fellow one-time title chaser, Marvin Vettori, has been linked to a potential summer return against former division champion, Luke Rockhold in recent weeks.
However, the Belo Horizonte native has also been compelled to test light heavyweight waters, after forcing an eventual 205lb matchup with Vettori in their pairing last year, due to weight issues regarding his ability to make the middleweight limit.
For Strickland, the Californian is currently in the midst of a six-fight winning run, most recently besting Jack Hermansson with a close split decision victory last month at the UFC Apex in a headlining slot.
Initially calling for a title shot against current champion, Israel Adesanya, albeit criticizing his own performance against Hermansson – Strickland has now claimed that the UFC had no interest in booking him against the Brazilian, Costa.
“I asked for (Paulo) Costa and the UFC didn’t seem so confident in his future..” Sean Strickland tweeted. “Also I don’t think they liked me punching down to get a title shot lol.. but worst case for you Costa there is always Bellator.. Maybe 205? Idk…”
Replying to Strickland, Costa accused the streaking contender of being “insecure” and a “fake macho”.
“I knew you were a f*cking p*ssy but this show of insecurity surprised even me,” Paulo Costa tweeted. “Just another fake macho.”
Strickland then refuted Costa’s claims, insisting that he had actually pursed the pairing, but alas, the UFC were less than interested in booking the two together.
“@BorrachinhaMMA (Paulo Costa) here’s the thing man,” Sean Strickland tweeted. “The UFC said no. I asked multiple times….. But after your forced move to light heavyweight, I’ll catch you in (Las) Vegas and if you wanna run your mouth I’ll give it to you for free…”
Strickland found himself in hot water earlier this week when he fired barbs in the direction of UFC light heavyweight contender, Khalil Rountree — issuing a series of flagrant comments toward the Los Angeles striker.