Former UFC heavyweight Brendan Schaub had plenty of questions for ONE Championship following Sage Northcutt’s recent knockout defeat.
Northcutt made his debut for the Asian promotion this past weekend at ONE Championship: Enter the Dragon. The 23-year-old was not given an easy test by any means, however, as he faced an experienced kickboxer in Cosmo Alexandre.
It would take just 29 seconds for Alexandre to shut the lights off on Northcutt with a brutal knockout punch that went viral.
“Super Sage” later revealed he suffered eight fractures from the punch and required a nine-hour surgery.
It led to debates about the level of competition outside the UFC, but Schaub simply believes this was a mismatch from the start.
“Remember I told you, I don’t like this fight for Sage Northcutt,” Schaub said on his podcast. “For his debut at ONE Championship, why give him Cosmo Alexandre? Cosmo Alexandre, who I have trained with at the Blackzillians, you can ask Rashad Evans, ask anyone who’s out there — Cosmo is a motherf*cker. No one wants to spar with him, he lit everybody the f*ck up. Even wrestlers that could try and grapple him, he would f*ck those guys up.
“… What is ONE Championship doing? What was the reason for bringing Sage Northcutt over? … Who’s his manager? Is this not obvious? Did anyone think that this was a good idea? Why would they do this to Sage?”
Career Trajectory Affected
Schaub also believes the manner of the defeat will affect his career trajectory. In essence, if Northcutt doesn’t reach his potential now, it’s on ONE Championship according to Schaub.
“You’re a young American prospect that left the UFC to pursue a long career in ONE Championship,” Schaub added. “His face is in 17 different places. Not only you get knocked out, it’s a life-changing knockout.
“So now his face is fractured, he’s going to be out at least a year, then when he comes back, his confidence is shot. Think he wants to stand with guys now? Then he has to figure things out. You f*cked the trajectory of his career. I hate to say this because ONE Championship has been good to us, good to Mighty Mouse, and it’s obviously on the fighter and it’s up to him to navigate his way through the rankings of fighting, but you f*cked him, ONE Championship. It was a complete mistake for Sage Northcutt to sign with ONE Championship.”
Northcutt’s career has been managed by his father Mark so far.
But for what it’s worth, Northcutt’s mentor and Team Alpha Male owner Urijah Faber acknowledged that the coaches should make the fighting decisions in the future.
“In the future, maybe coaches having the final say on whether or not a guy goes out there is a good idea and I think talking to his father who loves Sage very much and believes in him, hard lesson learned for all of us,” Faber recently said.