TODAY |

'I'll be back' - Bruised and battered Dan Hooker updates fans after losing epic UFC bout

Kiwi UFC fighter Dan Hooker has given a brief update to fans after his loss to Dustin Poirier in yesterday's headline bout that many are calling a contender for fight of the year.

Hooker and Poirier went the distance in a five-round lightweight bout with the American and former interim champion coming out on top on the judges' scorecards 48-47, 48-47 and 48-46.

A few hours after the fight, Hooker gave his first reflections on the event from his hotel room in a video which showed his swollen face and a nasty cut above his right eye.

"Hey everyone, just back at the hotel with the lads and having a feed," Hooker started off.

"I got checked out of the hospital and everything's all good - just a couple of stitches on the eye, but hey, that's the game we play no worries."

Hooker said he won't let yesterday's result - his second loss in nine fights at the lightweight division, slow him down though.

"It's just a small step back and I'll be back."

Hooker also acknowledged Poirier with the caption of his video.

"Credit to Poirier - better man on the night, no regrets, no excuses."

Hooker and Poirier's five-round slog-fest has been hailed by fighters and critics alike, with many praising both fighters for their heart during and after the fight.

"Absolutely amazing fight between Dan Hooker and Dustin Poirier. Attention: Zhang Weili and Joanna Jędrzejczyk, you have some company in the Fight of the Year department," MMA commentator Ariel Helwani tweeted.

"Take a bow, Dustin Poirier and Dan Hooker. That fight was everything and then some. Stock goes up for the both of you. Incredible performance, lads," fellow MMA reporter Chamatkar Sandhu added.

Poirier himself credited Hooker after their fight as well but said he was always confident he could get the result.

“It was a tough one,” Poirier said moments after the decision.

“Dan came to fight. He's a tough guy. He's on the rise. He really thought he was going to get past me. I trusted in my team, in my skill and my work ethic.”