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Dan Hooker is finally back in New Zealand four weeks after UFC 257 fight

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40 days after leaving New Zealand, Dan Hooker is finally back home ... but still stuck in a quarantine hotel.

UFC 257 Poirier v McGregor: Weigh-Ins Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC

UFC 257 was quite the trip for New Zealand Lightweight Dan Hooker.

Because New Zealand is one of the countries that has managed to completely stamp out COVID-19, getting back in after traveling abroad is quite the elaborate procedure. After leaving for “Fight Island” in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, on Jan. 11, 2021, Hooker revealed that he’d have to spend a month in Abu Dhabi followed by up to two weeks quarantine back in New Zealand. And not the loosey-goosey kind of quarantine where you stay at home scout’s honor style — mandatory hotel quarantine with guards and everything.

The good news: after one month sitting around in exile thinking about his first round knockout loss to Michael Chandler, Hooker is finally back in his home country. He shared some of the interesting sights and experiences of returning to New Zealand on social media.

After five weeks away, here he is finally getting to see his wife and kids ... from a slight distance.

Fortunately for Hooker, he’s not going to be stuck in the hotel room for an entire two weeks. According to an Instagram story, he’ll be out and reunited with his family in the next 48 hours (negative COVID tests permitting, of course).

UPDATE Never mind that 48 hours, looks like Hooker is stuck the entire 14 days.

Total time away from the family: more than 55 days.

Something tells me we may not see Hooker for awhile, so long as it’s this difficult to get in and out of the country. But he will be back. As he said in this “Submission Radio” interview, the immediate desire to up and quit following the loss to Chandler was followed by the realization he’s not really good at doing anything else.