Kevin Lee explains why he can forgive Conor McGregor’s perceived racist words

Kevin Lee

On August 26, UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor will step into the boxing ring with undefeated legend Floyd Mayweather. To promote this fight, the two stars recently engaged in a four-city press tour, stopping in LA, Toronto, Brooklyn and London.

As expected, this tour generated hundreds of headlines. Unfortunately, not all of them were positive, as Mayweather dropped a homophobic slur in London, and McGregor caught flack for comments that seemed to have a racist undertone.

Since this press tour, many members of the MMA community have weighed in on the two fighters’ ugly comments. The latest to do so is Kevin Lee, a surging UFC lightweight contender. In an interview with MMAJunkie.com, Lee explained that he’s willing to let McGregor’s comments slide because he probably doesn’t really understand what he’s saying.

“Honestly, I think that Conor doesn’t really understand, because he’s from a different culture,” Lee explained. “He’s an Irishman. He’s a culture vulture.”

“You look at any other Irishman, no other Irishman got swag like that,” Lee continued. “He’s a culture vulture. He is what he is. But I think he doesn’t understand the culture. He’s trying his best, and it’s just something that he didn’t grow up with. He ain’t grew up over here in the States. He doesn’t understand it to the core. He kind of understands it a little bit, but he don’t really understand it.

“He’s trying his best, but I didn’t hold it against him, because I honestly don’t think he understands it.”

Lee then briefly discussed a possible matchup with McGregor, which could very well happen in the future. Apparently, he’s happy to see McGregor focused on boxing, because it means his MMA game will probably slip.

“He’s getting worse [at MMA]. I’m getting better,” Lee said. “So we’ll see what happens when we cross paths.”

What do you think of these comments from Kevin Lee?

This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 7/20/2017.