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Paul Felder was supposed to fight James Vick in July of last year, but unforeseen circumstances caused the scheduled bout to crumble. This time, nothing will get in the way of these two hard-hitting lightweights when they collide at UFC on ESPN 1.
Both fighters are coming off crucial setbacks so expect them to go full throttle when they meet on February 17 in Phoenix, Arizona. As Felder returns to lightweight, learn about some numbers that have defined his career.
12: Years old when he started training in martial arts, specifically taekwondo and karate, at Zhang Sah Martial Arts in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Felder competed as kid and achieved great success especially in taekwondo, taking part in the Junior Olympics. He started training muay Thai in college before transitioning into MMA.
3: Wins against one loss as an amateur fighter. Felder turned pro in 2011, and like many others, he initially fought in regional promotions, most notably in Cage Fury Fighting Championships. He debuted at CFFC on Dec. 10, 2011, stopping Mtume Goodrum in round 2.
8: Wins without a loss before getting signed by the Ultimate Fighting Championship. After his successful maiden fight at CFFC, Felder fought in two different promotions before returning to CFFC. He captured its lightweight belt with a TKO of Marc Stevens and defended it with a stunning spinning heel kick KO of Craig Johnson.
51: Significant strikes landed on Jason Saggo in his first bout inside the Octagon. Saggo only managed to tally 29 but scored six takedowns. Judges favored Felder’s striking dominance and awarded him the victory via split decision.
44: Percent striking accuracy. In his 11 fights in the UFC, Felder has attempted 1,017 significant strikes, landing 444 of them. Often, his superior standup game has dealt him the victory.
1: Back-to-back defeats in his career. After starting strong at 2-0 in the UFC, Felder suffered two consecutive decision losses. He engaged in a thrilling war with Edson Barboza at UFC on Fox 16 before dropping yet another close decision to Ross Pearson at UFC 191.
11: Stoppages to his credit, 10 of which were by KO or TKO. His lone submission victory came at UFC Fight Night 81 where he choked out Daron Cruickshank in round 3.
33: Percent takedown accuracy. Takedowns aren’t exactly his strong suit, but Felder did shoot nine times and was successful three times.
4: Post-fight bonuses to his name. He was a recipient of the Performance of the Night award three times and the Fight of the Night award once.
4: Losses in his career. Felder has bowed only to high-level competition. He lost to Francisco Trinaldo via doctor’s stoppage and to Barboza, Pearson and Mike Perry, all in hard-fought matches.
34: Years of age. Felder was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on April 25, 1984 to Irish-American parents. He attended Ridley High School and University for the Arts where he took up acting.