Paulo Henrique Costa has not appeared in MMA news since his knockout victory over Johny Hendricks last November at UFC 217. Up until now, that is. Recently, the Brazilian was involved in controversy outside the cage after challenging transsexual MMA fighter Fallon Fox to a fight, ensuring that he would gladly compete against the transgender athlete “for free.”
Fox has appeared in MMA news for years during her professional career. In 2006, Fox underwent gender reassignment surgery in Thailand and subsequently started hormone therapy. After kicking off her MMA career in 2012, she accumulated a professional record of 5-1 within two years, with all her wins coming by knockout or submission. The only loss in that stretch came at the hands of Ashlee Evans-Smith, who later signed with the UFC.
These results alone are reason enough for Costa to criticize the fighter herself as well as the promoters who have booked her for their shows. Costa, according to a video posted on his social media channels, is bothered by Fox fighting because “physically, in terms of bone structure and muscular complexity, men are completely different from women”, Costa said in the video. Therefore, the UFC’s middleweight prospect, who has been known as “Borrachinha” until last year, deemed the fact that Fox was allowed to have a career in women’s MMA “unacceptable” and vowed to “protect women” by “fighting him for free, anywhere.”
“He was born a man, and he is a man, even though he calls himself a transsexual”, Costa said about Fox, who has essentially been retired for three years. “It’s absurd cowardice, not only by him, but also by the promoters of any event that has accepted this kind of absurdity. He has simply annihilated the girls who have fought against him. They were slaughtered, they put their lives at risk, they put their physical integrity at risk. I don’t want to get into [the personal aspect] of his choice, to be transsexual or not, homosexual or not. What happens here is that a man is fighting against girls, against women, as if he were one. This is absurd, and it can’t be accepted.”