Dan Hooker Reportedly Set To Meet Nasrat Haqparast At UFC 266

Dan Hooker will be returning to the octagon and will share it with Afghanistan fighter Nasrat Haqparast.

Hooker (20-10) will face Haqparast (13-3-0) on September 25 at UFC 266. The main event will be a featherweight title bout between Alexander Volkanovski and Brian Ortega.

The last time Hooker fought was at UFC 257.

That night, he was defeated by former title challenger Michael Chandler. Chandler, a former Bellator lightweight champion, defeated him via knockout in the first round.

Since then, he has not fought.

According to his interviews, he was even thinking about retirement, but that plan seems to be on a pause.

Haqparast has been fighting in the UFC for four years already. He earned five victories and two defeats, but is currently on two winning streaks. The last time he fought was at UFC Fight Night 187. He defeated Rafa Garcia via unanimous decision.

Before UFC, he had an eight winning streak and all the victories via KO/TKO. If he defeats a very experienced fighter like Hooker, he will move to another level in the lightweight division.

Two title fights will be held at UFC 266.

In the co-main event, Valentina Shevchenko will defend her title against Lauren Murphy.

Nick Diaz and Robbie Lawler will share the octagon for the second time after 17 years. They first met each other in 2004 where Diaz defeated Lawler via KO. This will be the second 5-rounder fight in the history of UFC, which will not be the main or title fight.

Merab Dvalishvili will fight against Brazilian Marlon Moraes. Dvalishvili is the sparring partner of current bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling.

If Dvalishvili wins, he is more likely to climb in the top 5 rankings.

Here’s the matchups for UFC 266.

  • Alexander Volkanovski vs. Brian Ortega
  • Valentina Shevchenko vs. Lauren Murphy
  • Nick Diaz vs. Robbie Lawler
  • Jessica Andrade vs. Cynthia Calvillo
  • Curtis Blaydes vs. Jairzinho Rozenstruik
  • Dan Hooker vs. Nasrat Haqparast
  • Marlon Moraes vs. Merab Dvalishvili
  • Manon Fiorot vs. Mayra Bueno Silva
  • Uros Medic vs. Jalin Turner
  • Nick Maximov vs. Karl Roberson
  • Shamil Abdurakhimov vs. Chris Daukaus
  • Matt Semelsberger vs. Martin Sano Jr.
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