After ending last year on a down note, UFC prospect Sage Northcutt is returning to lightweight for his first fight of 2017. The UFC confirmed on Wednesday that Northcutt will take on Peru’s Claudio Puelles at this summer’s UFC 214.
Northcutt (8-2) had an up-and-down 2016, losing twice at welterweight while scraping by for his lone win at lightweight. The 21-year-old Texan lost by arm-triangle choke to Bryan Barberena at UFC on FOX 18 last January, but rebounded with a unanimous decision nod over Enrique Marin at UFC 200. In the co-main event of UFC on FOX 22 back in December, Northcutt was dropped and ultimately finished by Mickey Gall, at which point he announced his intentions to go back down to 155.
Puelles (7-2) competed on season 3 of The Ultimate Fighter: Latin America. He advanced all the way to the final, but lost by TKO to Martin Bravo in the show’s season finale last November. Puelles has not fought since then, and this will be the first time he’s competed in the United States.
UFC 214 goes down on Saturday, July 29th at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California. The main event features a highly anticipated light heavyweight title rematch between Daniel Cormier and Jon Jones.