Israel Adesanya, Paulo Costa have intense staredown


ABU DHABI – The athletes from UFC 253’s two title bouts had their first formal staredown of fight week following Thursday’s pre-fight news conference.

UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya (19-0 MMA, 8-0 UFC), who puts his title on the line against Brazilian powerhouse Paulo Costa (13-0 MMA, 5-0 UFC) in Saturday’s main event, capped off the festivities, and they were much more serious than their previous run-in shortly after arriving in town.

The co-headliners were all business, too. Dominick Reyes (12-1 MMA, 6-1 UFC) will fight Jan Blachowicz (26-8 MMA, 9-5 UFC) for the vacant light heavyweight championship after Jon Jones vacated the belt in August.

UFC 253 takes place Saturday at Flash Forum at Yas Island in Abu Dhabi. The main card airs on pay-per-view following prelims on ESPN2 and ESPN+.

Watch the video above to see the UFC 253 pre-fight press conference faceoffs with the title-fight athletes.



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