Marvin Vettori and Paulo Costa showed the MMA community why they are both considered among the top fighters in the UFC Middleweight division, staging a five round back and forth battle in the Main event Of UFC Vegas 41 (Fight Night 196) on Saturday night at the UFC Apex Facility in Las Vegas.
The fight was initially scheduled to be a middleweight bout but later shifted to 195 momentarily after Costa expressed his issues with making weight for the fight but still got moved again to light heavyweight limit of 205 before fight night.
Both fighters just went ahead with their business and refused touch gloves due to the issues and banter exchanged by both fighters in the buildup to the fight.
UFC Fight Night 196 Full Fight Card Results
Costa (13-2 MMA, 5-2 UFC) was the first to get things going with hard kicks while Vettori (18-4-1 MMA, 8-3-1 UFC) was still trying to figure out his game and looked more for opportunities to counter. Towards the end of the first round, Vetory had fostered connected up in the cage and unloaded a flurry of combinations that seemed to depict that change in momentum of the fight.
Costa kept his kicks coming in the second round, one hard kick to the body and head of Vettori, who seemed the fresher of the two fighters. Vettori stayed on his feet after the leg kicks surprisingly and took all the incoming combinations from Costa, who thought he could see the end in the horizon. Vettori survived and continued his pressure on Costa, then went on to score a takedown but wasn’t able to do anything significant on the canvas.
The fight was briefly stopped after they both got back to their feet because Costa accidentally poked Vettori’s eye. The referee took one point for the foul and when the action restarted they both battled in the center of the cage to the time for the round expired.
Vettori continued his dominance in the third and this time, he controlled the pace of the fight but Costa kept chipping in his kicks, which were sent at Vettori with fight ending expectations. Costa later scored a takedown and went in for the guillotine choke but failed then Vettori switch and took the full mount till the end of the roumd.
Vettori continued his mission in the fourth round and kept the pressure on Costa with kicks and well timed punches. Costa in his part was conserved and chooses to fight from the outside But after eating big punches from Vettori, the Brazilian crept forward. Vettori was still fresher of the two and connected more than Costa before the round ended.
Costa opened fire in his first Fifth round since signing with the UFC, he battered Vettori with a chance for his opponent to strike back and in a bid to slow him down, Vettori shot for a takedown but wasn’t successful and Costa kept battering him till the end of the round. Costa definitely won that but Vettori had already done enough to win the fight .
Vettori with the win bounced back to the win column since losing a rematch against UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya at UFC 263. Costa has now lost two fights in a row but that’s just two out of his 15 outings. He will now have to decide the division he will compete next following his issues with the scale in the build up of this fight.
Marvin Vettori defeats Paulo Costa at UFC Fight Night 196 Fight Photos