Heading into his main event bout with Edson Barboza this Saturday, UFC lightweight Kevin Lee pays close attention to his division, and like everyone else, he was thoroughly entertained by last Saturday’s UFC on FOX 29 main event between Dustin Poirier and Justin Gaethje.
However, unlike most everyone else, Lee says he didn’t see anything ‘championship-level’ out of either man, focusing on Poirier’s post-fight call out of newly-crowned champion Khabib Nurmagomedov (via MMA Fighting):
“I seen it. I know Poirier was calling for a title fight and all this but I don’t know, it just seems like those dudes are in a different category. Can you really look at it and say Poirier’s a championship-level fighter? I just don’t see it. He looked good. He did good versus Gaethje, it was an exciting fight, I think he should go out and look for more exciting fights, but it didn’t really seem like a championship-level fight to me to be honest.”
“Speaking as a fan, what are you really looking for? He’s just going to go out there and get taken down by Khabib, he’s going to fight just like anybody else will fight Khabib or fight some of these top guys. I just don’t see too much from his style except exciting fights. I think him and Eddie (Alvarez), him and Gaethje again, something like that.
“He makes exciting fights, he should go out there and keep doing that, but leave the real fighting and the real championship-level s**t to the other guys.”
Lee, who’s combat base is wrestling, says that Poirier’s striking-based game won’t be enough to keep Nurmagomedov’s take downs at bay.
”The Motown Phenom” will have a chance to get back on track towards the title as he prepares to take on Edson Barboza at this Saturday’s UFC Fight Night in Atlantic City, New Jersey.
Lee had come up short against Tony Ferguson for the interim lightweight belt in October.