Ex-UFC title challenger Kevin Lee announces his return to MMA: ‘I’m coming out of retirement’

Kevin Lee

UFC veteran Kevin Lee is cutting short his retirement.

Lee, 31, announced his retirement in July following a 55-second guillotine choke submission loss to Rinat Fakhretdinov at a UFC Fight Night event. It was his first fight back with the promotion after being released in November 2021.

On Wednesday, the ‘Motown Phenom’ took to social media to announce his comeback.

“I’m coming out of retirement,” Lee wrote on X. “I’ll fight MMA again. Idk when, where, or who yet but I’m dropping weight and getting into shape now. … I’m gonna get in the best shape of my life that’s my focus right now. It’s been 6 months since I retired and I miss being around the sport.”

Winning nine out of 10 fights inside the Octagon, Kevin Lee secured his first shot at UFC gold in October 2017. He faced Tony Ferguson at UFC 216 for the interim lightweight championship, but came up short, suffering a third-round submission loss to ‘El Cucuy.’

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Lee struggled to find the win column, dropping four of his next six fights before being released by the organization. He went on to score a victory over Diego Sanchez under the Eagle FC banner before making his very brief return to the UFC last year.

Lee went 11-8 inside the Octagon and carries an overall record of 19-8.