Dan Hooker taking time to recoup, reflect before charting UFC return

After having some time to reflect, number eight ranked lightweight Dan Hooker shared his thoughts on his knockout loss to UFC newcomer and number four ranked lightweight Michael Chandler.

Hooker started off by saying he considered the worst that could happen prior to the fight, but he never could have imagined the fight unfolding the way that it did.

“You go into these kinds of things and you prepare yourself for worst case scenario,” Hooker said on Submission Radio. “But even that took the cake. It surprised me how bad it went.”

Despite the fact that it’s only been a couple weeks since his loss at UFC 257, Hooker appeared to be in great spirits.

When asked about whether he had an off night or if he was surprised by anything that Chandler presented during the fight, Hooker responded candidly.

He referenced his reaction to Chandler’s level change prior to throwing the overhand that triggered the beginning of the end for him that night.

“Zigged and should’ve zagged,” Hooker said. “It’s hard to describe, it’s such an obvious error and such a very costly mistake.”

After the fight, Hooker took his gloves off in the octagon, which is a common indicator that the fighter is retiring.

“In that moment, I was like, ‘I’m done, I’m finished with the s—ty sport, I’m done,’” Hooker said.

But after the feelings of frustration subsided and cooler heads prevailed, Hooker acknowledged his fighting career is far from over.

“Then you get back to the hotel and you sit down and you think about it and you realize you’re not good at anything else, either. So then it’s like, ‘Well s–t, I’ve kind of painted myself into a bit of a corner here,” Hooker said with a big laugh.

Looking forward, Hooker was presented with the idea of potentially fighting Conor McGregor, considering that they’re both coming off losses.


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“I say people’s names and call people out and do all that kind of thing when it makes sense,” Hooker said. “Getting hit in the head is not even a thought of mine for the coming months. You just gotta be smart about it, so I’m not even thinking about that.”

Once Hooker is back in the gym and feels 100 percent, that’s when he will start thinking about his next match-up.

“To sit here and say names and to say I’m gonna fight ‘this guy’ and say I want ‘this guy’ when it’s so far down the track, I feel like that would just be talking s–t.”