CEO of One Championship, Chatri Sityodtong, has said he feels Sage Northcutt can still be a three-sport world champion despite his recent knockout loss.
Northcutt, 23, tasted defeat in his ONE debut to Cosmo Alexandre, losing by knockout in just 29 seconds and suffering multiple facial fractures in the process. Sityodtong told MMA Junkie he still feels Northcutt is young in his fighting career and has the potential to do amazing things.
“My plan is the same,” Sityodtong said. “I really believe that Sage has the talent, has the potential, to be a three-sport world champion.
“Sage’s dream is to be an MMA, kickboxing, and a Muay Thai world champion, all within ONE Championship, and because we showcase all the martial arts, not just MMA, I still believe he can do it,” Sityodtong said.
Northcutt’s loss to Alexandre drew criticism due to the veteran kickboxer’s experience in the cage and ring. The ONE CEO dismissed any ‘hoopla’ that was raised about matching the up and coming Northcutt with Alexandre.
“I don’t know what all the hoopla was about, but yes, Cosmo is a world-class striker. And again, it’s because we have 140 world champions in ONE Championship. That’s what people don’t realize. The roster here is so deep and so talented, from any organization, you can’t just walk in and expect to dominate.”
Sityodtong concluded by saying although Northcutt has started off his ONE career one a rough patch, ‘Super’ Sage has a lot of room for improvement in his career and the CEO is confident Northcutt will fulfill his potential.
“He might have had a rough start, but anybody on any given day can lose, because there’s no margin for error at the highest levels of martial arts,” Sityodtong said. “I still believe Sage can pull it off. He’s so young and he’s so talented. He’s been doing martial arts his whole life. His cardio is insane, his strength is insane, his technique is unbelievable. I think people are going to be surprised three years from now when they see all that Sage has accomplished.”