Paulo Costa gives glimpse into UFC negotiating tactics, shares how he bet on himself and still came out short

Paulo Costa recently made a major change in his career. Costa decided to sack his longtime manager Wallid Ismail and replace him with his girlfriend.

And while the girlfriend part of it feels like one of Mike Perry/Diego Sanchez type moves Costa recently gave a glimpse into how his negotiation process with the UFC went in the past.

Paulo Costa has been with the UFC since March of 2017. Prior to that he was in Wallid Ismail’s Brazil promotion.

Costa shared how his negotiations went with Shakiel Mahjouri saying he too was on a $10,000 to show plus $10,000 to win contract initially. He added his first contract was for 4 bouts but after 2 knockouts UFC called him to extend his deal.

The change UFC offered was from $12,000 base to a $20,000 to show, $20,000 to win and it was for 5 bouts. Costa said no to the offer. He was matched with former champion Johny Hendricks.

“When I signed up with the UFC, I got the regular contract – I think 10 To stand if you win, after that the second one is 12 to stand (*show) and then 14 and for you know, so I signed for four fights. ”

“After fight (against Oluwale Bamgbose)… UFC called me to renew my contract.”

“So they call me to renew the contract. And but I don’t like the agreement, because they just put it – the changes was 12 to 12 to 20 plus 20”

Costa wouldn’t agree to 20 plus 20 and UFC was reluctant to up the offer opting to see how Costa fares against former champion Johny Hendricks.

“I beat him and say Okay. (UFC say) so let’s pay you 50 plus 50. So that’s better. But I think we can push it up more. And and what I told about Ismail, (he) is be more conservative. He say is a good good agreement, so I sign”

After Costa had a victory over Hendrick the offer got substantially better – it was now $50,000 to show and $50,000 to win. Now Costa felt he’d still be slighted but his former manager convinced him to take the deal.

Costa had no ill will toward Ismail but added that he took the deal and had his title shot just 4 bouts later meaning basically that he was effectively underpaid for the title shot.

And while on that contract, Costa would receive his title shot against Adesanya.

Costa shared “I would like to push a little bit more”

Dana White previously slammed Costa for asking to be compensated better saying:

 “You should have started a YouTube channel when you were thirteen years old and built your name up and everything else, and you could have had the fight on Saturday night, but you didn’t.”

And while Costa didn’t share specifics it’s fair to assume from what he said that he signed the 5 bout extension prior to Uriah Hall bout in 2018. Since then he’s had 4 bouts – 2 wins and 2 losses.

Costa is slated to duke it out with former champion Luke Rockhold at UFC 278 on August 20th. Their bout will be the co-main event with the main event being Kamaru Usman defending his title against Leon Edwards.