Lee Talks Potential Deaths From Weight Cutting
As a guest on The MMA Hour, this week UFC lightweight, Kevin Lee said that someone may have to die for their to be changes in weight-cutting.
“Everybody knows that this weight-cutting thing is a problem, but nobody is coming up with no f*****g solutions,” Lee told Luke Thomas on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour. “Everybody is kind of waiting for somebody to die. And I don’t feel like that’s the right thing to do. I think you have to take at least one step in the right direction and then just see how it goes. There’s really no downside to it.”
Lee lent his support to initiatives taken on by the California State Athletic Commission, and the idea of more weight-classes conceived by the Association of Boxing Commissions and Combative Sports (ABC) approved 165 pounds — or super lightweight, which the UFC has yet to adopt it.
“Most people, especially 155ers that I talk to, they all want it,” he said. “We all are about the same size. A lot of these [lightweights] are [185, 190]. … We’re all doing the same thing to compete against each other. It doesn’t make sense. If we can make it a little bit safer and we can make it a little bit more fair, that’s all I’m calling for. Just a fair, even playing field for me to go out there and compete with somebody without having to kill myself to do it.”
Lee doesn’t think the UFC would be in a bad spot by adding a 165 pound division.
“There’s so many guys, there’s so much talent,” Lee said. “The talent is there. It’s the same thing they said about adding 125 for the women. Yeah, it’s gonna take some time to cultivate that, but I think it’s gonna even be easier, because you have so many guys in between these weight classes right now that could fill that up. Where it’s at is the talent is always gonna show up.”
Lee pointed out his nearly fatal weight cut for this shot at Tony Ferguson and the interim lightweight title at UFC 216, and Uriah Hall’s seizure and minor heart attack while cutting weight earlier this year.
Lee believes something tragic like when a ONE Championship fighter died while cutting weight in 2015, will force the UFC’s hand when it is too late.
“That’s what it’s gonna take,” Lee said.
“It’s unfortunate. And people kind of gloss over it, too. Uriah Hall, who I train with, the man had a seizure cutting weight for fights. It kind of gets swept under the rug. And it kind of goes, ‘Oh, he was doing his own thing.’ … The man had a seizure getting ready for a fight. That’s not a joke. Its more serious than I think people realize. And it’s my health on the line, too, along with it. If all I gotta do is just step up and talk about it and try and make some change happen, then that’s what I’m gonna do. But the rest of these mother f*****s, they’re too scared. They won’t do it, because they don’t want to step up and say what they really feel.”
Initial report: MMA Fighting