Home MMA NewsLatest News Kevin Lee Admits Regret over Not Retiring Sooner, Discloses Torn ACL After Oliveira Fight

Kevin Lee Admits Regret over Not Retiring Sooner, Discloses Torn ACL After Oliveira Fight

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Kevin Lee is facing another surgical procedure.

UFC Vegas 76 marked the return of Kevin Lee, known as “The Mo-Town Phenom,” to the octagon earlier this month. Unfortunately, the 30-year-old former interim UFC lightweight title contender was far from his best, resulting in a swift defeat within 55 seconds.

In a welterweight clash against Rinat Fahkretdinov, Lee suffered an early knockdown and was eventually caught in a deep guillotine choke, causing him to lose consciousness. Since then, Lee has announced his retirement, citing his ongoing battle with a significant injury dating back to his last victory against Diego Sanchez at Eagle FC 46 in March of the previous year.

Lee revealed in an interview with Submission Radio that he has been struggling with knee issues for the past three years. Moving up to the 170-pound division eased his weight-cutting problems but introduced a new challenge—dealing with a severe injury. He admitted to not moving with the same speed as before and explained that his torn ACL, which he sustained during the Diego Sanchez fight, was never surgically repaired. However, it has become apparent that he now requires surgery.

Reflecting on his recent loss, Lee recalled watching a video of his entrance into the octagon, where he traditionally performs a big jumping stomp. Comparing the footage to his previous fights, he noticed a clear difference and acknowledged hurting himself multiple times during training camp.

Once a formidable contender in the lightweight division, Lee’s career never fully recovered after his interim title defeat to Tony Ferguson in October 2017. In his final stretch, he went 3-5, suffering submissions in three of those losses. In hindsight, Lee believes he should have retired three fights and several years earlier.

“I’ve been thinking about it since I fought Charles Oliveira,” Lee confessed. “Even Firas Zahabi will tell you that sometimes, after a fight, when you walk into the back, you have moments where you question what you just did. After that fight, I had a different feeling. Part of me wants to post the post-fight interview I did for that fight where I mentioned taking a few years off. Honestly, I probably should have retired right then and there. But I’ve been doing this for so long, putting my heart and soul into it, that I doubled down and committed to it.”

In other news:

  • Francis Ngannou states that the money he will earn from boxing Tyson Fury is incomparable to his UFC contract.
  • Michael ‘Venom’ Page announces his MMA free agency after a decade-long tenure with Bellator.
  • Rampage Jackson eyes an MMA comeback in 2023, targeting Darrill Schoonover as his desired opponent.
  • Paddy Pimblett addresses criticism about his weight and aims to never exceed 198 pounds again.
  • Israel Adesanya reacts to ending his feud with Jon Jones and reveals plans to train together.

For more updates, follow us on Instagram and Facebook and reach out to @DrakeRiggs_ on Twitter to suggest content for the Morning Report.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about retirement, torn ACL

Q: What injury did Kevin Lee reveal after his fight with Rinat Fahkretdinov?

A: Kevin Lee revealed that he has a torn ACL, which he had been dealing with since his fight against Diego Sanchez in March of the previous year.

Q: Why did Kevin Lee decide not to have surgery on his torn ACL initially?

A: After the Diego Sanchez fight, Kevin Lee chose not to undergo surgery on his torn ACL. Instead, he opted to strengthen it and continue fighting. However, it has become evident that surgery is necessary for his recovery.

Q: How did Kevin Lee feel after his fight against Charles Oliveira?

A: Following his fight against Charles Oliveira, Kevin Lee experienced a different feeling. He mentioned having moments of questioning what he had just done and admitted that he probably should have retired right then and there.

Q: How has Kevin Lee’s career been since his interim title loss to Tony Ferguson?

A: Kevin Lee’s career has been challenging since his interim title loss to Tony Ferguson. He went on to have a record of 3-5 in his final stretch, experiencing multiple submissions in his losses.

Q: What other news was mentioned in the article?

A: The article also covered various other news, including Francis Ngannou’s upcoming boxing match against Tyson Fury, Michael ‘Venom’ Page’s announcement of MMA free agency, Rampage Jackson’s potential MMA comeback, Paddy Pimblett addressing weight criticism, and Israel Adesanya’s reconciliation with Jon Jones and plans to train together.

More about retirement, torn ACL

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SubmissionMaster July 18, 2023 - 6:21 pm

torn ACL is no joke, man! kevin lee shouldve listened to his body. tough decision to retire but maybe it was the right call. wishing him the best.

fightfan89 July 18, 2023 - 7:00 pm

kevin lee should have retired b4 his injur! he is a warior tho, much respect. torn ACL is serious stuff! hope he recovers quick!

MMAenthusiast July 18, 2023 - 10:09 pm

damnn, kevin lee had a tough run. torn acl since diego fight? he shouldve got surgery then! respect for his heart but sometimes u gotta know when to hang it up.

KnockoutKings July 19, 2023 - 8:02 am

kevin lee’s entrance videos used to be lit! sad to hear he hurt himself. hope he gets well soon. much love to the mo-town phenom!

OctagonJunkie July 19, 2023 - 8:40 am

kevin lee’s career neva really got back on track after ferguson fight. it’s sad he didnt retire earlier. injuries takin a toll on him. hope he finds peace now.


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