The UFC dealt with a ton of challenging injuries last year, but this year has not been off to the greatest start as well. While none of the main events have fallen out yet, but there has been some fighters having constantly changing opponents. Two people just had their fights changed today.
Rising star Sage Northcutt not only has a new opponent but he has a change in weight class as well. Northcutt was set to face off with Andrew Holbrook who was undefeated as well. He was a submission specialist with nine of his 11 wins coming by way of submission. So far, he only has one win in the UFC by split decision, but it was TUF runner up and veteran Ramsey Nijem which is a pretty decent win in his first fight. Unfortunately, an injury has dropped him out of a big chance to be not he main card. Now, Northcutt will move up in weight to stay not he card to face off with Bryan Barberena. As of right now, Barberena is 1-1 in the UFC with a record of 10-3 overall. He was impressive in his debut as he took out Jake Ellenberger’s brother Joe Ellenberger with a TKO. In his next fight, Barberena lost his fight to Chad Laprise.
Northcutt has won two straight in the UFC and seven in his overall career. He has finished all of those fight with four by way of TKO and three by way of submission. Still, he is only 19 years old and six feet tall which means that making 155 pounds may be hard in the future. Who knows if this is a temporary move or a potential and permanent move which is important to factor in not using the IV anymore.
Also, veteran fighter Brad Pickett now has a new opponent. Pickett is in a must win situation after losing three straight and being 1-4 in his last five fights. He nearly took out contender Thomas Almedia in the first round but fell to a knee in the second round. His original opponent was Enrique Briones but an injury now has Francisco Rivera filling that spot. Rivera is in a tough spot as well with 3 losses in his last four fights. He was taken out by former Flyweight John Lineker in his last fight and it is the potential that whoever losses this fight could be cut from the UFC. it is do or die for both fighters when they face off later this year.