Tuesday, May 24, 2022

Cormier Tabs Dan Hooker As A “Gatekeeper” After Recent Losing Skid

UFC commentator and former champion Daniel Cormier thinks Dan Hooker’s place in the promotion has changed after recent losses.

Hooker’s return to featherweight couldn’t have gone much worse against Arnold Allen at UFC London. After an early-fight blitz from Allen on the feet, Hooker was unable to put any offense together and the fight was stopped midway through the opening round via TKO.

Hooker has now lost four of his last five fights in the Octagon after at one point appearing on the verge of a lightweight title shot. Before the loss to Allen, he was submitted by Islam Makhachev in a short-notice lightweight bout at UFC 267.

During a recent episode of the DC & RC show on ESPN, Cormier explained his thoughts on Hooker’s UFC future.

“I think we have our answer now as to where Dan Hooker is at in his career and it’s sobering. It’s actually sad for a fan favorite, like Hooker. But we know now that Dan Hooker is now on the tail end,” Cormier said. “Because when you start to become the person that is there to uplift the younger talent, the gatekeeper per se. It seems like now he will continue to find himself in those types of matchups.” (h/t BJPenn)

Some of Cormier’s broadcasting colleagues, including Michael Bisping, have questioned what Hooker’s motivations were for the move to 145 pounds at this stage in his career. His fight against Allen was his first at featherweight since falling to Jason Knight in Nov. 2016.

UFC President Dana White said in his UFC London post-fight press conference that it’s up to Hooker in terms of his next move in the promotion. It’s unclear whether Hooker will continue his pursuits at featherweight or move back up to lightweight as he looks to get back on a potential winning streak.

Do you agree with Daniel Cormier? Is Dan Hooker now a gatekeeper?

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