Many fighters were sceptical of the then 19-year-old, Sage Northcutt, for his sudden jump into super-stardom, immediately after joining the UFC, and welterweight champion Tyron ‘The Chosen One’ Woodley was on of them.
Woodley recently spoke on a UFC 205 conference call, to discuss his training for his upcoming bout, in which he will defend his title against Stephen ‘Wonderboy’ Thompson, and stated that he had to ‘bite a couple’ of his words about the young welterweight prospect. Here’s what he said, courtesy of MMA Fighting:
"We've all had our comments about Sage as a fighter, I think. Some of the fighters were a bit envious of his entrance into the UFC, and some of the endorsements and some of the things that came with it, [with] him being so young. We all had something to say, me included. And after training with him, I had to bite a couple of my words because he's way more well-rounded than what I expected, what I thought."
Northcutt’s karate style of striking is similar to that of ‘Wonderboy’s’, most likely the reason why the welterweight champ brought the young star on, to help him prepare for the monumental contest. Woodley won the welterweight title, after knocking out former champ, Robbie Lawler, in their main event meeting at UFC 201 in July.
Woodley’s knockout of Lawler was the fastest finish in a welterweight title fight history.
Thompson has earned his shot at UFC gold, after defeating a murderer’s row of contenders, including former champion, Johny Hendricks, and former title challenger Rory MacDonald. Now Thompson will get his first crack at UFC gold, and against Woodley, who has stated that he doesn’t respect ‘Wonderboy’ as a man.
The pair will meet in the co-main event of UFC 205, live on pay per view, from the Madison Square Garden Arena on November 12, 2016.
For latest MMA news, spoilers and rumours visit our Sportskeeda MMA section.Published 04 Nov 2016, 17:42 IST