Eagle FC has made several splashes in the free-agent market in recent months, but none were bigger than their surprise addition of former UFC lightweight and welterweight Kevin Lee (18-7). “The Motown Phenom” was viewed as one of the best fighters on the market following his unexpected release from the Las Vegas-based promotion in November.
However, what made the signing all the more intriguing was the fact that Eagle FC boss and former UFC lightweight champion, Khabib Nurmagomedov, also announced that Lee would be one of the faces of the organization’s new 165-pound division.
Lee, 29, has stated for years that he would be a dominant force if the UFC had created such a division. And considering his mixed results at 155 and 170-pounds — as well as an industry belief he still has a world of untapped potential — Lee competing at this new in-between weight could finally unleash the championship-level fighter many feel he could always be.
Kevin Lee: ‘If you walk into a room and weigh 165-pounds, I’m walking out of that room‘
With his promotional debut set for March 11 — and likely against fellow UFC castaway Diego Sanchez — Lee is putting the division on notice that he is the baddest man on the planet competing in a cage fight at 165-pounds.
“At the end of the day, once we cut out all the promotion, and we cut out all the lawyer speak and all the back-and-forth, I’m the most dangerous man in the world, who’s willing to weigh in at 165,” Lee told The Schmo recently. “If you walk into a room and weigh 165-pounds, I’m walking out of that room.”
To possibly prove that point on a grand scale, Lee was asked if a tournament would be the best way to show he really is the cream of the crop in the division. However, the Tristar Gym fighter doesn’t believe a tourney is necessary to prove what his contemporaries already know.
“This is fighting. All comers, whoever wants to come, they already know I’m the best. We don’t need a tournament in order to do that. I’ll run a tournament but we don’t need that,” he said.
Lee lost five of his last seven fights in the Octagon, dating back to his 2017 lightweight title fight loss to Tony Ferguson at UFC 216. He ended his UFC run losing two straight, which included a March 2020 submission loss to current 155-pound champion Charles Oliveira.
Do you think competing at 165-pounds will finally bring out the best version of “The Motown Phenom?”