Sage Northcutt off ONE 165 after coach Urijah Faber deported from Japan

Sage Northcutt off ONE 165 after coach Urijah Faber deported from Japan

  • MMA News
  • janvier 28, 2024
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A long-awaited fight between former UFC hype magnet Sage Northcutt and grappling sensation Shinya Aoki was finally set to go down last night at ONE 165 in Tokyo, Japan. Unfortunately, things fell apart a mere hour before the bout was set to start after Northcutt’s coaches — including Urijah Faber — were kicked out of the country for not having work visas.

“I’m sorry to all my fans and to my opponent Shinya Aoki for not fighting tonight,” Northcutt wrote on Instagram. “There were some last-minute visa issues with two of my coaches and they are on their way back to the US right now.”

“One Championship offered to help by giving me a world champion Jiu Jitsu coach for a replacement, but not having my coaches that I trained my whole camp with out there with me to compete against arguably the worlds greatest MMA submission artist of all time wasn’t going to be best for me.”

“Thank you Chatri and One Championship for trying your best to make things work at the last minute,” he concluded. “Again I apologize to Shinya and everyone that was tuning in. I know that One 165 is an incredible card with incredible world class talent that everybody will still enjoy.”

Shinya Aoki would go on to fight UFC and ONE veteran John Lineker in a literal last-minute openweight bout. Lineker had reportedly weighed in as some sort of backup for the event, and was sitting in the crowd when officials approached him with an offer to fight. Aoki would go on to submit him with a rear-naked choke three minutes into round one.

Despite earning the win, “Tobikan Judan” was not happy with how ONE handled the situation.

“The only reason why I accepted the fight was cause I used to be friends with Chatri [Sityodtong, ONE CEO] for 12 years,” Aoki said during the post-event press conference. “Even though I hate him now. I wish ONE would love me the same way I loved ONE.”

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