Tyron Woodley: Sage Northcutt Is Faster & More Powerful Than Wonderboy: UFC welterweight champ Tyron Woodley is headed for the biggest fight of his MMA career when he faces surging No. 1 contender Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson in the co-main event of November 12’s blockbuster UFC 205 from Madison Square Garden in New York City.
After winning the title with an earth-shaking first round knockout over former champion Robbie Lawler at July 30’s UFC 201, ‘The Chosen One’ will now meet an opponent whom many feel has the perfect to defeat his hard-charging style, as “Wonderboy” used his unique karate-based offense to defeat former title contender Rory MacDonald in his most recent bout at UFC Fight Night 89.
The one-sided decision win secured seven straight wins and a title shot for Thompson, who has finished Johny Hendricks, Jake Ellenberger, and surging middleweight Robert Whittaker during the streak. He may possess the most momentum of any fighter in the Octagon, yet Woodley believes Thompson isn’t even as good as his new training partner.
In a video released on his Youtube channel, Woodley is featured sparring with highly touted UFC lightweight Sage Northcutt. Apparently impressed with ‘Super’ Sage’s skills, Woodley made the bold proclamation that Northcutt is indeed faster, more powerful, and in possession of better takedown defense than the larger and more experienced Thompson (transcribed by Bloody Elbow):
“These young guys, man. Old man got to whip out those new tricks, because they come at you,” Woodley said about Northcutt. “I work with Sage. He’s obviously in a similar style as the opponent I will be fighting against.”
“He, just in my opinion, is just a little bit faster, and his strikes come with a little bit more force. His takedown defense should be better. His power should be better, so I’m actually training with a better version of what I’m going to compete with.”
Those words could (will) evoke the collective ire of the online MMA community in a big way, as Woodley has already been the subject of many an online attack following his win over Lawler, including alleged instances of racism.
But aside from those ridiculous back-and-forths, Northcutt is still very inexperienced compared to Thompson, and has yet to display the pure knockout power that the flashy, pinpoint striking “Wonderboy” has used to win his way to the top of one of MMA’s deepest divisions.
Do you believe Northcutt comes close to outclassing Thompson in the areas Woodley focused on? Watch their training video and decide for yourself: