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When Anthony Johnson of all people has something negative to say about a fighter’s weight cut, it’s likely the sign of a problem.
Johnson (23-6 MMA, 1-0 BMMA), a current Bellator fighter, is perhaps one of the most infamous names in MMA history when it comes to botched weight cuts. His repeatedly failures to make the contracted weight ultimately led to a release from his first stint with the UFC, and “Rumble” wonders if Paulo Costa is about to meet the same fate.
Costa’s (13-1 MMA, 5-1 UFC) weight cut has been the talk of UFC Fight Night 196 fight week. He was originally supposed to fight Marvin Vettori (17-5-1 MMA, 7-3-1 UFC) in the middleweight headliner, but the situation has progressively unwinded with the fight being bumped up to 195 pounds, then ultimately 205 pounds. Costa claims he was 211 pounds when he arrived in Las Vegas for the ESPN+ streamed fight at the UFC Apex, and endless drama has followed.
Vettori has been game all the way, taking the changes in weight class in stride. Costa has received a ton of backlash from the MMA community, though, and Johnson is the latest to chime in.
Johnson knows he was far from perfect. He was forced to move from welterweight to middleweight and still came in heavy before finally jumping up to light heavyweight – and even dabbling at heavyweight. However, he said Costa’s actions are beyond the scope (via Instagram stories):
“I missed weight 3 times while fighting for UFC,” Johnson wrote. “Even if I knew it would be a struggle I’d still try and make the weight and not be a b*tch and try to do catch(weight) outta the blue cuz I was lazy. Costa wants the fame and glory without putting in the work. Bash me all you want but even I didn’t make up excuses or cop out.
“If he fights 205 just stay there. That way there’s no more excuses and nobody will see how lazy he is. Trust me going up in weight is much better and makes life easier.”
UFC Fight Night 196 official weigh-ins begin at 11 a.m. ET. MMA Junkie will be on-site with a live stream of the festivities.