Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is currently on the hunt for a new opponent to fight Michael Chiesa at the upcoming UFC 287: “Pereira vs. Adesanya 2” pay-per-view (PPV) event on April 8 in Miami. That’s because welterweight bruiser Li Jingliang suffered a back injury and was forced to withdraw from the “Sunshine State” fight card.
Kevin Lee threw his name in the proverbial hat but it appears Chiesa, who lost to “Motown Phenom” by way of submission at UFC Fight Night 112 back in June 2017, is not interested in running it back with Lee at this stage of his career. Whether or not that decision has anything to do with the mom bomb Lee dropped at this press conference is unknown.
“I got a call a week ago that Mike Chiesa’s opponent pulled out with injury for next week’s UFC 287 in Miami,” Lee wrote on Instagram. “I accepted the fight on short notice, I’m ready to go. But I got word today that Chiesa said no to our rematch. I no longer really care about money, rankings or popularity contests I wanted to put on a show for the the world. Looks like I’m gonna have to watch from the crowd with everyone else. I been asking for a fight for the last six months I’m hungry.”
The 30 year-old Lee (19-7) parted ways with UFC in summer 2021 and quickly racked up a victory for Eagle FC the following March. That led to a second run with UFC that could start with a Tony Ferguson rematch in July assuming “Motown Phenom” completes the drug-testing requirements set forth by USADA, which are standard for all returning athletes.
Remember that MMAmania.com will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 287 fight card right here, starting with the early ESPN+ “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard on ESPN/ESPN+ at 8 p.m. ET, before the PPV main card start time at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN+ PPV.
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