Kevin Lee admits he should’ve retired after Charles Oliveira loss: “I don’t move the same”

By Josh Evanoff - July 18, 2023

Former UFC lightweight title challenger Kevin Lee has reflected on his 2020 loss to Charles Oliveira.

Charles Oliveira, Kevin Lee

‘The Motown Phenom’ announced his retirement following a loss to Rinat Fakhretdinov earlier this month. That was Kevin Lee’s first fight back with the company after a 2021 release, and it’ll be his final. Following the first-round submission defeat, the lightweight contender announced his retirement.

In a recent interview with Submission Radio, Kevin Lee discussed his decision to retire. There, the lightweight revealed that he fought at UFC Vegas 76 with a torn ACL. However, as he noted, fighting with an injury, or at less than 100% was commonplace near the end of his career.

For that reason, Kevin Lee believes he probably should’ve retired after his loss to Charles Oliveira. ‘Do Bronx’ famously submitted the former title challenger in March 2020, in the midst of his historic winning streak. In the interview, he admitted that he immediately wanted to take a hiatus after the defeat.

Ultimately, he wound up returning the following year, losing to Daniel Rodriguez and getting cut from the UFC. Three years on, Kevin Lee would’ve rather just retired above all else.


Kevin Lee

“If I’m being really honest, it’s been something I’ve thought about since I fought Charles Oliveira,” Kevin Lee stated in the interview. “Even Firas Zahabi will tell you, sometimes when you get done with a fight and you walk in the back, sometimes you have moments where you’re like, ‘What the f*ck did I just do? This is crazy’. But after that fight, I had a different type of feeling to it.”

He continued, “…Honestly, I probably should’ve retired then and there… My knees have been giving me hell for three years now. It’s been, I didn’t really, the hardest thing before this was weight cutting right. Me going up to 170 kind of alleviated that, but I’ve never had to deal with this type of injury before. Honestly, if I’m really taking a look at myself and taking a step back at how this camp went, I don’t move the same. I’m not moving at the same speed I was before.”

What do you make of these comments? Do you agree with Kevin Lee’s retirement decision?

This article appeared first on BJPENN.COM


Kevin Lee UFC