For those who have followed him since he first debuted on the big stage last year, UFC lightweight Sage Northcutt is basically the gift that keeps on giving. Combining the looks of a 1980’s teen movie bully with the personality of a 1950’s ice cream shop owner (or a 1990’s fitness guru, whichever you prefer), Northcutt is a gravity-defying, front-flipping goofball who has enjoyed a meteoric rise to fame despite fighting just four times in the world’s premier mixed martial arts organization.
Of course, Northcutt earned a target on his back from pretty much every fighter in the UFC when it was revealed how much he was making per fight, because despite everything we’ve come to learn about how the sport operates and what drives ticket sales, there are still people out there naive enough to think that a fighter’s payrate should be determined by things like “win streaks,” “punches landed,” and “family events missed due to training.” And at the top of the list of fighters looking to get themselves a piece of that Northcutt Bump™ is none other than Mickey Gall.
Following his beatdown of Phil “CM Punk” Brooks at UFC 203 earlier this month — for which he made a mere $30,000 to Punk’s cool half million — the up-and-comer took to the mic to call out the “corny” Northcutt for a potential fight, promising that he would “punch the spikes out of his hair” in a profanity-laced post-fight interview. Having rebounded from from his loss to Bryan Barberena at UFC on FOX 21 with a decision win over Enrique Marín at UFC 200, Northcutt made an appearance on Ariel Helwani’s The MMA Hour today to not only accept Gall’s proposition, but throw some adorable trash talk his way as well.
After insinuating that both of Gall’s UFC wins essentially came over a couple of inexperienced dads, Northcutt went for the throat when critiquing Gall’s own stylistic choices:
You know what’s funny, Mr. Helwani? [Mickey Gall] said he was gonna punch the spikes out of my hair. You know, in his pictures, his hair kinda looks like mine. He just doesn’t have the hair gel in it. I’m thinking maybe he should get some hair gel in it and style it or something.
If y’all will excuse me for one moment …
Northcutt was quick to follow-up this diss to end all disses by stating that he wasn’t exactly a fan of all the cuss words that Gall used while calling him out, and that should the two fight, he would be able to “take the fight wherever he wanted to.” For what it’s worth, Gall’s coach (and UFC lightweight) Jim Miller doesn’t seem to share this notion, telling MMAFighting that “I think [Gall] goes to the ground with Sage and it’s another dominant submission in the first round.”
Obviously Sage is very dangerous on his feet, he’s very unorthodox and can throw some crazy things. But I think it’s a perfect matchup for Mickey, and it’s like, yeah, do it. Take the fight and continue the momentum.
And just like that, we have set into motion what will undoubtedly be the greatest MMA rivalry since Chuck Liddell vs. Tito Ortiz. Personally, I say we strike while the iron is hot and book this welterweight scrap in the co-main, no, the main event of the UFC’s year-end card at UFC 207. Forget Rousey vs. Nunes, THIS is the fight that fans want to see.