Tuesday, July 5, 2022

Paul Felder Believes He’ll Knock Out Dan Hooker And Earn Title Shot

Paul Felder has set his game plan for 2020.

Felder will make the walk to the Octagon in the new year against Dan Hooker in the main event of UFC Auckland. The plan for the American is to go down there and knock out the local fighter. And, with the win, potentially earn a title shot.

“As far as intensity, that was real,” Felder told MMA Junkie. “I went down to New Zealand expecting a little bit of that from Dan because of how we interacted on social media. We kind of went back-to-forth a little bit. But that’s what it’s all about. We’re two guys that are trying to rally for a title shot after this one. We’re in each other’s way. That’s how it should be. That’s how it’s supposed to be when you’ve got a five-round main event with a guy.

“I’m invading into his country. My whole plan is to knock his ass out in front of all his friends and family. And take that money and get out of there and go on to a title shot.”

For Felder, he didn’t care that Hooker was ranked behind him because he finally gets to headline a UFC show. It will add more hype behind him and he can either be one fight away or get a title shot with a win.

I either wanted a really high ranked opponent or I wanted a main event,” Felder said. “I made that really clear to my manager, to Sean Shelby, to Dana White that, look, this is what I want. For some reason, it seemed Dana was a little reluctant to give me that shot. To kind of give me that chance to step in there. I don’t know what it is about my style that is any question you wouldn’t want to have in a five-round fight.

“They finally trusted me, they gave me that opportunity and they gave me that shot. That’s what I want. I didn’t care that Dan’s the one ranked behind me, that stuff doesn’t matter. He’s been on an absolute killing streak right now. So if I take him out, that just sets me up for one more fight potentially until fighting for the belt.”

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