Paul Felder contemplated retirement following his loss at UFC Auckland to Dan Hooker, stating that it might be it for him. His manager later came out and said that it was an impulsive statement and from the looks of things, that could be the case.
To be fair to Felder, he didn't confirm anything - he merely hinted at it since he has a child at home and wanted to focus on his commentary role.
His coach Duke Roufus said that the judges' decision cost Felder and his family a whopping $82,000, suggesting that there needs to be a major reform in the ways fights are scored.
“Even in the loss, he took it with dignity, respect, a true martial artist, a man of character. I’m very proud to be not only just Paul’s friend, his countryman, his teammate, his coach with him — he took that thing like a champ and I love his attitude. I’d rather lose with Paul than win with some fighters. He’s gracious in victory, gracious in defeat, and I was very proud of him. I think it was a legendary fight.”
Roufus also said that the weight cut for Auckland was the easiest of Felder's career and believes that the "heartbreak" will make Felder and his team even stronger than before.
“Five rounds is his jam. He actually made weight the easiest he’s ever made in his career. The fight game, it’s a love affair and like any other love affair, it breaks your heart sometimes. That one was a heartbreaker but what does not kill us makes us stronger, and we’ll be stronger.
Roufus also explained that he texted Dana White requesting a rematch between Felder and Hooker for UFC Dublin this summer:
“I did text Dana White after the fight and I haven’t heard an answer back, but I asked him I said ‘let’s run this back how about Dublin, August 15.' That’d be a hell of a main event in Dublin on fight night out there. I think this one deserves a rematch.”
While Felder's camp are hoping to get the fight, it seems unlikely that they'll have an immediate rematch. Hooker has now cracked the top 5 while Felder has taken his place at #7. The Kiwi is now anticipating a bout with Justin Gaethje or Dustin Poirier next.