Dan Hooker calls out Al Iaquinta

After getting beaten down by Edson Barboza in his last fight, Dan Hooker badly needed a win at UFC San Antonio to save face. The New Zealander did just that, as he went into enemy territory against the hometown hero James Vick and came through with arguably the biggest win of his UFC career to date.

Hooker needed just 2:33 into the first round to brutally knock out Vick and reestablish himself as a force to be reckoned with in the UFC lightweight division. Hooker didn’t waste any time calling his shot for his next fight when speaking to reporters backstage following the event, calling out Al Iaquinta for a fight.

“I feel like (Al) Iaquinta’s the one that makes sense,” Hooker said (transcript via MMAjunkie.com). “That name definitely stands out to me. Yeah, Iaquinta, October 5th, meet me in Australia. Get him on a plane.”

A fight between Hooker and Iaquinta would certainly delight fans as both men are known for standing in the center of the Octagon and trading with their opponents. Although Iaquinta is coming off of a five-round decision loss to Donald Cerrone, he remains one of the top-ranked lightweights on the UFC roster. After beating Vick, it’s only up from here for Hooker, so taking on the higher-ranked Iaquinta is in many ways the perfect callout.

UFC 243 is headlined by Hooker’s friend, UFC interim middleweight champion Israel Adesanya, taking on UFC middleweight champion Robert Whittaker for the undisputed title. It makes perfect sense for Hooker to fight on that card as well, one that should be full of fellow Aussies and Kiwis. The fight card is rumored to take place in Melbourne, Australia, though there have been rumors the card could be shifted to Las Vegas. Either way, adding Hooker vs. Iaquinta would be a tremendous boost to the event’s undercard.

Are you interested in seeing Dan Hooker fight Al Iaquinta?