The middleweight contender says that an issue with the New York State Athletic Commission (NYSAC) concerning stomach medication was the cause for his removal from the card.
“I was called to fight Romero. I signed the contract; he hadn’t signed it,” Costa said to Combate. “He’d gone to a reality show, and we were in this indecision of whether he’d be able to fight or not. When he came back from the reality show and was able to sign the contract at last – in the same week he was back, the New York Athletic State Commission asked me to make a statement about a medication I’d taken for my stomach. And then they said, ‘In order for you to answer this, you won’t be able to fight, unfortunately. You’re unfortunately going to be ineligible for this fight because you need to notify to us what it is that you took for your stomach.’ It was a simple medicine, ‘Plasil’ (used commonly in Brazil for nausea). It’s not doping. It has nothing to do with doping. You take it when you feel some type of stomach discomfort. So because of that – I didn’t understand it, either – they said that I couldn’t fight him, because I had to figure this out first.”
One thing Romero also did was accuse Costa of using illegal substances and would eventually retract that statement, but Costa says the accusations damaged his image.
“It’s bad,” Costa said. “Even though it was a false rumor, it creates that ‘smoke,’ like people say. Until people realize it’s not like that at all, maybe it gives a bad image, you get a bad image. But there’s nothing to say. Simply none of that happened. I never used any of these artifices, such as doping or anything like that. And USADA is there to prove that. I will hit him with more gusto. I will, for sure. Each strike will have some extra pleasure.”
MMA Fighting did reach out to the NYSAC, with the commission telling them that Costa was fined a total of $9,333.33, which has not been paid at this time. A member of the NYSAC also told MMA Fighting that “evidence received and reviewed by the Commission conclusively showed that Mr. Costa failed to comply with Commission rules and policies regarding the use and disclosure of non-performance enhancing substances while licensed.”
UFC Fight Night Fort Lauderdale takes place on Saturday, April 27 from the BB&T Center in Fort Lauderdale, Florida with Ronaldo Souza and Jack Hermansson headlining. Fightful is providing live coverage of the event, which airs live on ESPN.