UFC 253: Israel Adesanya stops Paulo Costa to retain middleweight title

Unbeaten champion proves his class with second round stoppage of Brazilian

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Israel Adesanya retained his UFC middleweight title in spectacular fashion in the headline bout at UFC 253 in Abu Dhabi on Sunday morning, knocking out Paulo Costa in the second round.

The Brazilian, the No 2-ranked contender, was totally outclassed by the champion to suffer his first professional defeat, with Adesanya’s record lifting to 20-0.

It marked only the second time in UFC history that two unbeaten male opponents squared off for a title. UFC 253 was the first of five events at “Return to Fight Island”, the promotion’s second residency in Abu Dhabi following July’s hugely successful inaugural run.

“Like Roy Jones said, ‘Y'all musta forgot’ because of what happened last time," Adesanya said. "You thought, ‘Oh, he's so boring, blah blah blah blah blah’, and I see you media people as well with your clickbait headlines. But trust me, I had to make y'all remember we the best.”

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