Kevin Lee will likely need to score an impressive win on Saturday if he hopes to get a bout with Conor McGregor in the near future, but in the meantime, the rising lightweight’s doing his best to rile up the champ.
As you surely know, Lee will take on Tony Ferguson for the interim lightweight championship on Saturday at UFC 216. Lee was tapped for the contest, thanks to a 9-2 run in the UFC and a five fight, winning streak.
McGregor hasn’t many positive things to say about the division’s top contenders, but, recently the Irish star said he cares about defending the 155 belt, and that he’ll be monitoring Ferguson – Lee. The latter, meanwhile, has repeatedly questioned whether McGregor is a legitimate champ, since he’s never defended the belt and has fought just once at 155 in the UFC.
Well, at a recent media luncheon to promote UFC 216, Lee didn’t let up on McGregor, as “The Motown Phenom” had this to say about the star, and his recent boxing match with Floyd Mayweather (quote via MMA Junkie):
“He’s a small dude, too, (having fought at) 145,” Lee said. “He was getting outwrestled by a dude that’s 40 years old and a boxer. (Mayweather) was beating him in the clinches and outwrestling him. You’ve got to show a little bit more than that to me. So after this one, maybe I might give him a shot at the title. Maybe. I don’t know. We’ll see how he kind of reacts. Maybe he should fight Nate again and prove that he can beat a top fighter.”
“It’ll be on my terms,” Lee added, while discussing a potential showdown with McGregor. “I’m expecting to take some damage in this fight. I’m doing the hard work. I’m doing the heavy lifting. No one wanted to fight Tony. Conor didn’t want to fight Tony. It’ll be on my timetable. I’ll tell him when we’re going to fight. If we fight on St. Patrick’s Day, maybe. That might make some good business sense.”
So, it will be interesting to see if these comments get back to McGregor, and if they do, what his reaction is. One thing’s for certain, Lee’s gifts aren’t limited to what he does in the Octagon. He’s pretty talented when it comes to verbal warfare too.