Kevin Lee Confirms Permanent Move to 170lbs & Reaching Potential: ‘Won’t Go Out as Somebody Who Had Potential’

‘The Motown Phenom’ has his eyes set on making a second successful run under the UFC but in the welterweight division this time. He's also focused on fulfilling his potential

Kevin Lee
Credit: Kevin Lee (via Instagram)

Mixed martial arts veteran Kevin Lee plans to stay in the welterweight division after his next bout and wants to fulfill his potential.

Kevin Lee started his professional career on the regional circuit over a decade ago in Mar. 2012. He made his way to The Ultimate Fighter and secured a contract by edging out Jesse Ronson in a close-fought contest in Jul. 2014. He had a relatively successful run with wins over Jake Matthews, Michael Chiesa, and Edson Barboza, and shared the octagon with the likes of Tony Ferguson and Charles Oliveira. He was one of the most promising prospects in the game who appeared to drop a step.

Following a loss to Daniel Rodriguez in Aug. 2021, Lee departed the UFC and only competed once, beating Diego Sanchez under the Eagle FC banner in Mar. 2022.

Kevin Lee promises a better version in the UFC return

During the pre-fight press conference for UFC Vegas 76, Kevin Lee shared his thoughts on his comeback to the UFC after nearly two years away.

“I’m excited to be back. I’m excited to test my skills, come out here and perform against the best in the world. That’s the only thing I’m interested in,” said Lee. “I love this sport and that was the ultimate deciding factor in me coming back. I didn’t want to turn in boxing where all the best guys aren’t in one place. For me to prove that I’m one of the best guys, taking on an up and coming young dude is going to do that.

“The fans haven’t really seen me since I fought Charles Oliveira and are going to see a different version of me in this fight. A bigger, stronger, more mature, faster version and I’m excited to show that.”

Lee plans to stay at 170lbs & wants to fulfill his potential

‘The Motown Phenom’ confirmed his intentions to stay at welterweight. Lee opened up about his reasons for coming back, sharing he wants to show his potential and not leave the sport as someone who had potential.

“It’s going to be feeling like the old me. My last fight was bullsh** I’ll say it straight up. Coming off knee surgeries and all that stuff I just rushed into it. It wasn’t the real me so I would like to get back to that and show my real potential and not just go out to somebody like oh he had potential. I gotta prove to myself that I can meet those standards I’ve set even at a young age so it’s going to be first and foremost, getting the W by any means necessary even if it’s a boring or drag em out fight.”

“170 for sure. I’m a big guy, filling out my frame, I’m strong. People are going to see on Saturday that I’m a full fledged 170.”

Kevin Lee is set to mark his return to action against Rinat Fakhretdinov at UFC Vegas 76 this Saturday, July 1 at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Published on June 28, 2023 at 8:50 pm
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