“Super” Sage Northcutt did not have an ideal start to his ONE Championship career, but that is not diminishing his excitement for the future.
This past May, the American fell to Cosmo “Good Boy” Alexandre in his promotional debut at ONE: ENTER THE DRAGON in Singapore. The Brazilian knocked him out in the first round of their welterweight mixed martial arts bout with a powerful overhand right.
Evidently, that punch caused serious damage to Northcutt.
Following the contest, he was taken to a local Singaporean hospital, underwent a nine-hour surgery to repair eight fractures in his face, and has since returned home to the United States, where he has been recovering.
The road back to the Circle has been understandably long and arduous, but the 23-year-old has remained upbeat — as always.
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Recently, he received some great news when he traveled with his older sister, Colbey Northcutt, to “The Lion City” for her own debut in The Home Of Martial Arts.
“I’m healing up pretty good. It’s been six months since my surgery. I’m trying to stay healthy and stay in shape, and just eating as clean as possible,” he says.
“I did get the okay from the doctors in Singapore [to start working out again] when I was there with Colbey during her fight in November. They checked me out and gave me the okay to get back into some light workouts, but nothing too strenuous yet.
“I’m looking forward to training mixed martial arts, wrestling, jiu-jitsu, boxing, and all that stuff so I will be able to fight again soon.”
While his first ONE appearance did not go according to plan, Northcutt claims his overall experience with the promotion has been the best of his career.
The multiple-time Karate World Champion appreciates how the company’s officials treat everyone with respect, and he is grateful for the hospitality and concern showed to him following his match.
“ONE Championship is a great organization,” Northcutt says.
“I think how they treat the fighters is incredible. Even the owner doesn’t talk bad about any fights, even if it doesn’t go great.
“For instance, Mr. Chatri [Sityodtong, Chairman and CEO of ONE Championship] actually came to the hospital to check up on me to see if I was okay.
“He was seeing if I needed anything and if there was anything he could do for me. That was so extremely nice of him to do that. I’m super thankful to be able to fight for him.”
Though Northcutt has not been able to train during his recovery, he has tried keeping himself busy through other activities.
For instance, he has frequently watched other ONE Championship events to scout out potential opponents and learn as much as he can about them.
“I actually got to walk out there with her and be the water boy. I got to give her some water in-between rounds. That was pretty fun,” he recalls.
“It was definitely a cool experience. She did a lot better than I did in my ONE Championship debut!”
Currently, there is no scheduled date for Northcutt’s return.
The American is just now starting to do light workouts again, but soon, once he is fully cleared, he will be training diligently in anticipation of his next bout in The Home Of Martial Arts.
Also, when the “Super” athlete does make his return, he intends to move down to the lightweight division and dazzle the global fanbase with some skills they have never seen.
“I want to go out there and be so dominant that everybody goes, ‘Wow,’” Northcutt offers.
“I think I’m going to be a different Sage. I realized a lot of things after having my surgery and recovering [at home]. Like, I realized there are so many techniques that I don’t even use.
“I have some crazy kicks that no one has ever seen me do inside the cage. I have some really powerful kicks and really powerful wrestling. I will use those to the best of my ability.”