Paul Felder Happier With Perry Fight than Original James Vick Matchup

By Matt McNulty Jul 6, 2018
UFC 226 is now available on Amazon Prime.

Ultimate Fighting Championship fighter and commentator Paul Felder has now gotten a raw deal twice in a row, losing two opponents at the last minute as injury replacements for other fights, but this time he’s happier with the outcome.

Earlier this year during the chaotic lead-up to UFC 224 in Brooklyn, Al Iaquinta, Felder’s scheduled opponent, was bumped up to the main event to fill in for the injured Tony Ferguson against Khabib Nurmagomedov. The change-up was doubly stinging to Felder, as he was not only left without a fight but had briefly been considered as Ferguson’s replacement, only to be rejected by the New York State Athletic Commission due to his UFC divisional ranking.

More recently, “The Irish Dragon” was set to take on surging lightweight James Vick at UFC Fight Night 133, but after Iaquinta pulled out of his main-event matchup against Justin Gaethje, Vick was tapped as his replacement and Felder was once again left in the lurch without an opponent.

An unfortunate pattern was developing and Felder understandably expressed his frustrations on Twitter, referring to the two late changes as “slaps in the face.” Later that day, he was booked in a welterweight contest against the always-entertaining Mike Perry. Felder and “Platinum” will throw down on the main card of Saturday’s UFC 226 since featherweight champion Max Holloway was pulled from the card on Wednesday with concussion-like symptoms.

The 33 year-old Philadelphia native is more than happy with his consolation fight against Perry, even more so than he was with the Vick matchup.

“It couldn’t be a better guy for me to get back in that Octagon than a [expletive] clown like him,” Felder said at UFC 226 media day. “[Perry] can say all that nonsense, talk about size advantage and all that. It doesn’t matter. At the end of the day, I am so pumped to get back in that Octagon and punch and elbow somebody in the face. There’s more hype behind this fight than the one against James Vick.”

Perry is looking to snap a two-fight losing streak while Felder is riding a three-fight winning streak at lightweight and will be competing for the first time at welterweight on Saturday night.

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