UFC London Preview: Dan Hooker returns to 145 to face Arnold Allen

Tomorrow night in the co-main event of UFC London, we will see the featherweight return of “The Hangman”. Dan Hooker (21-11) returns to the featherweight division after a four-year lightweight run to take on England’s own Arnold Allen (17-1).

In his first run in the UFC’s featherweight division, things didn’t go well for Hooker. Overall, Hooker was just 3-3 at featherweight before moving up. He had a big run at lightweight that came close to title contention, but after going 1-3 in his last four, it was time for a move.

Hooker decided to move back to his original weight class where he feels he can be more competitive. He’s not getting an easy draw out of the gate at UFC London when he takes on Arnold Allen.



Had it not been for injury layoffs, Arnold Allen might’ve already fought for the UFC’s featherweight title. He’s been perfect inside the octagon with a record of 8-0, but those wins over been over the course of almost seven years.

This is a big showcase for Arnold Allen on his home soil. If he can beat Dan Hooker tomorrow, he’s perhaps only a win away from that title shot.

UFC London Prediction

I’m expecting a very technical battle tomorrow at UFC London. I think Arnold Allen is going to come out of the gate strong looking to close the distance and he’s going to look to use his speed to land big shots on Hooker.

Hooker has almost a six-inch reach advantage so you have to think he’s going to want to circle and strike from the outside. One thing I’m curious about is the chin of Dan Hooker given the weight cut back to 145 pounds.

We’ve seen guys really struggle when moving back down in weight. Could Hooker be another one? I don’t think so and I think we see a very strong performance from Dan Hooker. I think he’s going to land really good shots from the outside and I see him catching Arnold Allen coming in.

Look for Hooker to mix in some takedown attempts at UFC London as well. Now, I also expect Arnold Allen to have big moments and look for leg kicks. In this extremely close and technical battle, I think we go to the scorecards.

On a neutral site, I think that Hooker would get the nod after this close fight. However, with the home crowd behind him, I’m expecting the judges to lean towards Allen in a very close split decision.

Prediction: Arnold Allen by Split Decision