Paul Felder announces retirement at UFC Vegas 27

Sep 7, 2019; Abu Dhabi, UAE; Paul Felder (blue gloves) speaks to the media after fighting Edson Barboza (not pictured) during UFC 242 at The Arena. Mandatory Credit: Per Haljestam-USA TODAY Sports

One of the more exciting fighters in the UFC‘s lightweight division is hanging it up. On tonight’s broadcast, top ten lightweight contender Paul Felder (17-6) announced that he was officially retiring.

Felder last fought at UFC Vegas 14 when he stepped in on short-notice to face Raphael Dos Anjos. Felder was competitive with the former UFC lightweight champion while having no training camp.

That fight back in November seemed to relight the fire in Felder. The Irish Dragon had spent most of 2020 leaning towards retirement. However, he declared after UFC Vegas 14 that he wanted to continue.

Since then, months have gone by and Felder started to reconsider. On the UFC Vegas 27 broadcast, Felder said that he’s really enjoyed his time off with his family and he’s been finding it harder and harder to get back in the gym.

Felder has also said in the past that if he didn’t see himself challenging for the title anytime soon, he’d likely hang it up. Well, Felder is ranked ninth in the UFC‘s lightweight rankings and would likely have had to string together three or four wins before getting a title shot.

UFC’s Irish Dragon

It’s been a great career and a heck of a run in the octagon for Felder. Felder made his UFC debut back in 2015 and entered the octagon at 9-0. The Irish Dragon has been in there with some of the best since making his debut with the promotion.

Overall, Felder has gone 8-6 during his UFC run. During that run, Felder has been in there with the likes of RDA, Edson Barboza, and Dan Hooker. The highlight of Felder’s UFC career is his TKO victory over current lightweight champion Charles Oliveira.

I’m sad to hear the news tonight, but I completely get where Felder is coming from. It’s unfortunate we won’t see the Irish Dragon in the octagon anymore, but we will get to hear Felder doing some UFC play-by-play for years to come.