Saturday, July 20, 2024

UFC 298 results, highlights: Robert Whittaker survives spinning heel kick, overcomes Paulo Costa for big win

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Never doubt the heart of Robert Whittaker. The former UFC middleweight champion overcame a terrible scare against Paulo Costa at UFC 298 on Saturday en route to a decisive win.

Whittaker is regarded as a calculated tactician, but he fought with renewed fury inside the Honda Center in Anaheim, California. Whittaker pulverized Costa’s leg and threw everything into his punches. Whittaker managed to amp up the aggression without compromising his renowned movement and angles. He did not get the finish but walked away with a well-earned unanimous decision.

“I told you I would take the fight to him,” Whittaker said during his post-fight interview. “I looked for his scalp the whole 15 minutes but he’s a tough dude!”

Costa fought with a chip on his shoulder too. “Borrachinha” threw powerful head kicks with remarkable speed, including one that nearly stole him the fight. Whittaker was closing in on a decisive first round before Costa uncorked a spinning heel kick that had Whittaker stumbling. Fortunately for Whittaker, the round expired before Costa could further capitalize.

“Nothing but a flesh wound,” Whittaker said. “It wasn’t fun. It was his best shot of the night, for sure.”

Whittaker was compelled to show a mean streak in his first fight since being stopped by Dricus du Plessis last year. Rematching the new UFC middleweight champion is a top priority for Whittaker.

“I put a lot of pressure on myself to come here and perform, especially after my last fight and I did exactly that,” Whittaker said. “I’m looking to make amends with Dricus. I’m not going anywhere, baby! I’m back.”

Can’t get enough boxing and MMA? Get the latest in the world of combat sports from two of the best in the business. Subscribe to Morning Kombat with Luke Thomas and Brian Campbell for the best analysis and in-depth news, including instant analysis of UFC 298 in Anaheim, California at the conclusion of the PPV event below.

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