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31st Jan 2016

WATCH: Hype train derails as Sage Northcutt taps quickly to arm triangle… from half guard

First loss

Darragh Murphy

Ronda Rousey, check. Paige VanZant, check. Sage Northcutt, check.

Conor McGregor, watch out. The UFC’s cash-cows are tumbling like you wouldn’t believe.

Northcutt, the 19-year-old prospect who many were hailing as a future UFC champion, suffered his first professional loss on Saturday night.


The karate specialist was a 2/5 favourite according to most bookmakers for his first promotional bout at welterweight.

‘Super’ Sage was forced to accept a fight at 170 lbs for the UFC on Fox 18 main card opener after original lightweight opponent Andrew Holbrook withdrew from the bout.

Bryan Barberena welcomed Northcutt to welterweight in some style with a rather bizarre finish at UFC New Jersey.

The previously undefeated Northcutt had claimed the first round but came unstuck in the second after Barberena ended up on top in a scramble.

Limiting Barberena from half guard, Northcutt appeared to be relatively safe when the MMA Lab fighter looked for an arm triangle.

Just when everyone expected Barberena to press down on Northcutt’s left leg and move to mount or side mount, Northcutt unexpectedly tapped under what appeared to be very little pressure.

Typically, arm triangles are finished when the attacking fighter’s hips are pressed tight to the mat on the same side of his opponent’s body as the submission is locked in as that’s when the choke can be tightest.

While it will come as a learning curve for Northcutt in terms of his grappling prowess, some fighters weren’t so kind to Northcutt.