Dan Hooker: Lauren Murphy Loss Crossed Line From ‘Sporting Endeavor’ To ‘Freak Show’

UFC lightweight Dan Hooker has given his take on the debate that’s followed Lauren Murphy’s loss to Jéssica Andrade.

Former women’s strawweight champion Andrade was one of many Brazilians who had their hands raised at UFC 283 in Rio de Janeiro this past weekend. While the likes of Johnny Walker, Brunno Fereira, and Ismael Bonfim secured devastating knockouts, “Bate Estaca” put in one of the most dominant three-round displays in recent memory.

Andrade beat one-time flyweight title challenger Murphy from pillar to post, bloodying the Alaskan’s face with numerous unrelenting onslaughts throughout the 15-minute main card fight.

During the bout, particularly in the third round following a controversial decision to allow “Lucky” to fight on, the commentary team discussed the prospect of the contest reaching the distance, with Daniel Cormier even loudly calling on referee Osiris Maia to “stop the fight.”

That sentiment has been widely shared on social media since, with many questioning both the third man inside the Octagon and Murphy’s corner for failing to intervene to stop what they branded as certain and unnecessary damage.

Now, one UFC fighter renowned for his wars inside the Octagon has called for action.

Hooker Calls For Boundaries To Be Set After Murphy Loss

During The AllStar’s reaction show for the opening pay-per-view event of 2023, #11-ranked UFC lightweight Dan Hooker provided his thoughts on Andrade’s dominant and, in the eyes of many, hard-to-watch victory over Murphy.

While “The Hangman” has had his fair share of gruesome battles and taken a significant amount of damage inside the cage, notably against Edson Barboza in 2018, when he was allowed to continue beyond what many thought acceptable, he believes that the ‘willing to die’ attitude employed by fighters like him and Murphy needs to be taken away.

According to Hooker, Murphy’s defeat strayed beyond the line of ‘sport’ and into the territory of “freak show” at UFC 283. For the New Zealander, a line needs to be in place to stop that from happening moving forward.

“I feel like, if that was boxing, that would have been stopped probably after the first round or pretty close after that,” Hooker said. “Once it stops becoming a sporting endeavor and a sporting contest, they kinda just stop the fight… I kind of feel the same. We’re being paid for a sporting endeavor. No boundary has been set. No clear line has been set by coaches, or commissions, or referees, or doctors… They all just stare at each other like, ‘You do it.’

“Once a fight is crossing the line of being a sporting endeavor, and now it’s like — that fight went into the part where it was just gratifying people’s (thirst for blood),” Hooker continued. “Like, ‘Man, I haven’t seen anything like that before, look at her face!’ I feel like once it crosses the line into, just like… a freak show, someone needs to put their hand up and say, ‘I’ve seen enough.’ We need to decide who that’s going to be.”

While Hooker’s take appears to be a common view post-UFC 283, Murphy has certainly seen things differently.

As well as calling out those who believe her bout should have been stopped on social media, “Lucky” compared her defeat to the one suffered by Glover Teixeira on the same night, in addition to the damage taken by Joanna Jędrzejczyk in her Fight of the Year contender with Zhang Weili in 2020.

Do you agree with Dan Hooker’s take on Lauren Murphy’s defeat to Jéssica Andrade?

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