UFC Brasilia was one of the strangest events in UFC history. It was a very strong card with a whole host of elite local talent. But because of the coronavirus, the card took place without any fans in the venue. Add in the number of fights that went decisions and it was extremely bizarre.
In the main event, there was a fight with major implications for the top end of the lightweight division. Kevin Lee took on Charles Oliveira with the winner knowing they’d be close to title contention. Lee is highly-rated but falls short at all the wrong times. Meanwhile, ‘do Bronx’ started off his UFC career erratically. But now 10 years on he’s suddenly excellent.
And he proved that again by pulling out a submission win over Lee. ‘The Motown Phenom’ came into this fight overweight but couldn’t use that to his advantage. Check out the finish below.
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) March 15, 2020
This was a competitive fight. Both men found success on their feet. Lee landed good strikes on the ground while Oliveira kept looking for submissions. He has the most in UFC history and added another to his record against Lee. In the third round, Lee came out with guns blazing. But then he went for the takedown.
That was the beginning of the end. Oliveira got him in a guillotine and squeezed. Lee tapped but then tried to fight on like he didn’t. I guess it was worth a try but it didn’t pay off for him. It was a very tough loss for the Detroit native.
JUST THAT QUICKLY! 👀
— UFC (@ufc) March 15, 2020
Lee admitted that it was his fault. Firas Zahabi had laid out a gameplan for him but suddenly he decided to mix things up. His impulsiveness cost him the fight when he could have won a decision. In the end, he choked himself out by being too eager.
“I mean I got choked. So, I don’t know. The fight was going good. I just got choked. That’s all I can.. I really can’t put it on anything else but that.” Lee said. “The first two rounds I felt like I stuck to the gameplan and then I sat in the corner before the third and I told them I was going to switch up the gameplan. And, looking back on it, I admit that it was the wrong move. I tried to take control of the fight, instead of just trying to let the fight happen. So, I choked myself out.”
— Fight Night Chat (@FNightChat) March 15, 2020
Despite missing weight, Lee is adamant he’s staying at 155lbs. He’s had problems in the division before but is a bit undersized for welterweight. However, it might be a while before we see him fight again. He needs to reassess things because his head isn’t in the right place.
“I think lightweight is still my home,” Lee said. “You know I just have to fine-tune some things. But I am going to take a long time. I kind of rushed into this fight. It will probably be a good minute before you all see me again. It will probably be a few years or so.”