Kevin Lee is going to give it to you straight, for better or worse.
“The Motown Phenom” abruptly retired from combat sports after a shocking submission loss to Rinat Fakhretdinov at the UFC Vegas 76 event earlier this month inside the promotion’s “stupid” APEX facility in Las Vegas.
Lee, 30, was an outspoken critic of the fan-unfriendly venue.
“Me and Dana (White) have a very hot and cold type of relationship, there’s a lot of push and pull there,” Lee told Submission Radio. “I don’t wanna comment too much on that, that could get me in some trouble. They get pissed at me for saying certain things. With me, I’m gonna try and give you the clearest, honest answer that I can. Especially if somebody asks me a question or if I’m doing media or whatever. And honestly, they don’t like that too much. I think they don’t necessarily want you to say certain things. I’ve been kinda told on the ‘hush hush’ about certain things.”
Lee (19-8) parted ways with UFC in late 2021 and made a pit stop in Eagle FC the following year. After picking up a victory over fellow UFC export Diego Sanchez, “The Motown Phenom” would get called back to the promotion for UFC Vegas 76, where he wasted little time airing his APEX grievances.
“I try to speak for myself, they try and speak for themselves,” Lee continued. “They’re the promoter, we’re the fighter. They’ve got certain things they wanna do, they got certain goals they wanna accomplish and hey got certain ways of going about it that don’t always benefit the fighter. I just kinda always speak up for myself. I don’t even say most of it, really. I say like one out of 10. I let you slap me for like nine times before I actually say something. I don’t think they necessarily like any of that. Just saying that right there, I’ll probably get a phone call.”
Lee expects to remain “100 percent” retired moving forward.