Monday, May 16, 2022

Dan Hooker Shuts The Door On Featherweight Return, Focused On 155

After falling short in his return to featherweight at UFC London, Dan Hooker is refocusing his attention on a run at 155 pounds.

Hooker has lost four of his last five fights in the Octagon, including most recently against Arnold Allen in March. After losses in three of his last four fights at lightweight, Hooker attempted to move back down to 145 pounds in hopes of a potential title run.

Those hopes were squashed by Allen, as he finished Hooker midway through the first round of action. It was Hooker’s first fight at 145 pounds in almost six years.

As Hooker looks to rebuild his game and work to get back in the win column, he’s returning to his old stomping grounds in the lightweight division to do so.

During a recent interview with Submission Radio, Hooker shut down the idea of attempting another fight at featherweight.

“Oh, f*** no, I couldn’t make featherweight if I wanted to,” Hooker said. “I’m closer to middleweight than I am to featherweight. I felt like I could’ve stayed at 145, but obviously a lot of sacrifice goes into that. But off of the result of the last fight, I feel like I’m in the exact same position at both weight classes. So why not? Why would I make the extra sacrifice? The extra sacrifice was to get me back in the same position that I was in. But if I’m in the exact same position [as I’m in at lightweight], I’d rather be in the exact same position and eating, and having a slice of cake every now and then.

“Put a fork in it, bud, I’m out of the conversation [at featherweight].” (h/t MMA Fighting)

Hooker has been honest about why he feels his recent struggles have occurred. He’s cited arrogance on his part as a big reason for his losses and is working on the mental side of fighting ahead of his return.

Before his losing skid, Hooker had been on a roll with three-straight lightweight victories over the likes of Paul Felder and Al Iaquinta. He also earned finishes over Gilbert Burns and Jim Miller as he began his rise at 155 pounds.

Hooker is anticipating a return later this year as he aims to get back into title contention in the UFC.

Who do you want to see Dan Hooker fight in his return?

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