Former UFC middleweight and light heavyweight title challenger, Chael Sonnen has claimed that Kiwi striker, Dan Hooker is firmly on a shortlist of potential opponents to welcome former two-weight UFC champion, Conor McGregor back to the Octagon.

Dan Hooker, a native of Auckland, New Zealand – is set to return to the lightweight limit after a brief second excursion at featherweight whilst under the banner of the UFC – suffering a first round knockout loss to Arnold Allen in March at a UFC Fight Night London event. 

Confirming recently that he is simply unable to make the featherweight limit continually this deep into his professional career, Hooker, who plys his trade largely under the banner of City Kickboxing – is set to return to the lightweight limit for his next outing in the Octagon.

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The New Zealander’s most recent outing at 155lbs came in the form of a short-notice UFC 267 clash with Islam Makachev in October on ‘Fight Island’ – suffering a one-sided first frame kimura loss.

Dan Hooker has been shortlisted for a fight with Conor McGregor according to Chael Sonnen

However, despite recent form at lightweight, Sonnen has claimed that the Auckland kickboxer is firmly amongst the names on a shortlist to welcome former duel-weight champion, McGregor back to the Octagon first the first time since last July.

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“What’s gonna be next for him?” Chael Sonnen said on his official YouTube channel. “Let’s just give that a minute. We just got this information that the former number five guy in the world is returning to the division. I will share with you a little inside scoop. I do know that Dan Hooker’s name is on the shortlist of possible opponents for (Conor) McGregor’s return.”

Sidelined still through injury, McGregor, a former undisputed lightweight and featherweight champion, most recently headlined UFC 264 in July of last year, the Dubliner suffered a fractured tibia in his trilogy rubber match against former interim lightweight champion, Dustin Poirier – resulting in a first round doctor’s stoppage TKO loss.

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UFC president, Dana White has claimed recently that he currently has no opponent in mind for McGregor’s Octagon return, which he expects to come in fall of this year.