Kevin Lee had a chance to win the interim lightweight title against Tony ‘El Cucuy’ Ferguson, but he lost the bout via third-round submission at UFC 216 last year. Last night, Saturday, April 21, Lee got back on winning track earns a fifth-round TKO win over Brazilian Edson Barboza in the main event of UFC Fight Night 128 from Atlantic City NJ.
Lee has been calling for a fight with Khabib for more than a year now after the victory; Lee mentioned he wants to lock horns with UFC lightweight champion, Khabib Nurmagomedov.
Khabib has several options to consider, for his first title defense. There is a potential record-breaking fight with Conor McGregor that could happen later this year while the likes of Dustin Poirier and Eddie Alvarez could also be options.
In the post-fight media scrum, Lee said he will see how things play out in the division but want to face Nurmagomedov next.
“Here’s the thing: Eddie was too fat to take a fight less than a month ago (at UFC 223),” Lee told MMAjunkie post-fight. “When you say something like that, and you do that, your opportunity pass you by.
The man already had his shot, and he lost it, and done lost it and lost it embarrassingly. It is what it is. He was too fat a while ago. If he want the work, he can get it. Dustin, if the folks want to see Dustin then they will, but I don’t feel like he raise as many question that really need to be answered.
“I feel like I bring a complete style to this game, and I can raise up a lot of questions that people want answers for, especially with people like Khabib. He can’t outwrestle me, he can’t outwork me, he can’t out-strike me. So we’re going to see what the better fight (is) and what the UFC really wants, because that’s what really matters.”
Lee went on to say that he is willing to face Khabib in Russia, but the champ is insisting he will not return until November of this year.
“I don’t know, we going to see. I hear they’re going to Russia in September so I might be making a call to Uncle Dana,” Lee said. “I’m trying to make a fight happen. I don’t think Conor (McGregor) wants it; I don’t think no one else want it.
“Dustin says he wants it, but I’m gonna get in where I fit in. If they want to give it to Dustin and then Dustin get his face beat in. If Khabib wants a real challenge he knows the man to come to.”
“Nate don’t really want to fight,” Lee said. “I told him, ‘Shut the (expletive) up or go back to riding bikes.’ A month later he posted a picture of him riding bikes, so I guess he already done gave me that W. We going to see how this whole thing shake out. We going to see what Conor’s doing, sitting on the sidelines or what he want, but I feel like Khabib is the next fight to be had.”
Who do you think Khabib Nurmagomedov should fight next for his first title defense?