- Sage Northcutt lost his ONE Championship debut against Cosmo Alexandre in May of 2019.
- Fans have been debating whether or not Northcutt would return to MMA after the defeat.
- ONE has confirmed that Sage Northcutt’s return will finally take place on April 28.
The ONE Championship debut of Sage Northcutt didn’t exactly go to plan. Fortunately, the 24-year-old has a chance for redemption. New reports confirm that Sage Northcutt’s return to MMA will come against Shinya Aoki this April.
Officials within ONE are once again throwing Northcutt to the wolves. Shinya Aoki is a true veteran of the fight game with some of the most dangerous submissions in MMA. Today, we’ll break down this exciting upcoming matchup.
Let’s get into it!
Looking Back at Sage Northcutt’s MMA Career
Mixed martial arts is an unforgiving sport. Fighters just need one push from a major promotion to become superstars. Unless they have the skills to compete against elite fighters, however, they won’t stay around for long.
Sage Northcutt made his debut with the UFC after just 5 victories on the regional scene. He found success early on, going 2-0 in the promotion with both wins coming via stoppage. Sage then went 1-2 over his next three bouts in the UFC.
After three more wins in the world’s biggest MMA promotion, news broke that Sage was a free agent. He ultimately decided to sign with ONE Championship, one of the largest promotions based in Asia. His first bout came against Cosmo Alexandre, a former kickboxing champion with devastating knockout power. Many online sportsbooks listed Northcutt as the betting favorite heading into the matchup.
This fight proved to be too much for Sage. Cosmo landed a massive punch in the first round that knocked Northcutt out and broke his orbital bone in several places. This was the last time “Super Sage” has competed in mixed martial arts.
Fans have been debating whether or not Northcutt would retire after his most recent loss. It was a brutal defeat for a young fighter to experience. It doesn’t appear that the former UFC star is quite ready to hang up the gloves, though.
Fans will get to see Northcutt competing in the sport again soon. Now is the perfect time to talk about who he’ll be taking on!
ONE Championship Finally Schedules Sage Northcutt’s Return Fight
ONE Championship has worked hard to sign big-name fighters over the past few years. Sage Northcutt was one of the promotion’s most high-profile signings to date. Many felt that Sage could become a huge star with the promotion’s market.
His first fight didn’t exactly go as planned. That certainly doesn’t mean he’s not a good fighter. Northcutt is still extremely young and likely has a long career ahead of him if he chooses to continue fighting.
This week, news broke that Sage Northcutt’s return will officially take place on April 28 against grizzled veteran, Shinya Aoki. Longtime MMA fans are well-aware of Aoki. He’s an incredible submission specialist with wins over several former champions including Eddie Alvarez, Kamal Shalorus, and Tatsuya Kawajiri.
The higher-ups at ONE Championship admitted they threw Northcutt to the wolves a little too early when he fought Cosmo Alexandre. Interestingly, they are doing the same thing with this bout. Aoki has far more experience in the fight game and holds a skill-set that has been known to give Sage trouble.
It’s always sink or swim in mixed martial arts. ONE Championship is paying Sage Northcutt more than many other fighters and wants to make sure he is worth the investment. A loss here could be devastating to his career.
This isn’t the only exciting bout that ONE Championship has planned. One of the promotion’s other former UFC fighters is gearing up for a triumphant return soon.
When Will Eddie Alvarez Fight Again?
ONE Championship’s roster is stacked right now. A few years ago, the promotion began actively signing former UFC fighters as a way to gain more attention from the US market. That includes Eddie Alvarez, the former UFC and Bellator lightweight champion of the world.
Alvarez’s last fight came in August of 2019 against Eduard Folayang. It was an exciting clash and one that Eddie ended up winning by submission in the first round. He’s now riding the longest layoff of his career and plans a successful comeback when ONE Championship holds its US television debut on April 7.
“I’m on edge a little bit because I’m not used to having this much time off,” Alvarez recently told the media. “There’s pros and cons. I’ve been fighting 20 years, I’ve had promoters breathing down my neck for a fight for 20 years, so it’s not bad to have a year where someone isn’t, ‘Hey, you’re gonna fight this guy, you’re gonna fight that guy.’ The relief of pressure is good, kind of helps you miss it… This is the third time in my career where I had a stint over a year where I had to sit and sit at ease and be patient. I always come back rejuvenated, stronger, with a stronger mind and a better outlook on fighting.”
Many are excited to see what Eddie has in store. He’s been involved in some of the best fights of all time across different promotions. One more win will likely earn him a shot at the championship.
Sites like BetOnline are not yet offering odds on this event. That will likely change over the next few weeks. Stay tuned for updates!
Are you excited to see Sage Northcutt’s return? Do you think he will get the victory over Shinya Aoki? Let us know in the comments section below.