Kevin Lee On Max Holloway Moving Up To Lightweight: ‘We Are Too Big, Too Strong’
Kevin Lee faces Al Iaquinta at UFC on Fox 31 this weekend, but like most of us he’s been talking about Max Holloway’s incredible performance at UFC 234 last Saturday.
Lee will be looking to get himself back in the UFC lightweight title mix when he faces Iaquinta in Milwaukee in the headline bout, but he’s well aware of all the talk of Holloway moving up a weight class to challenge for the 155-pounds title.
Speaking on The MMA Hour this week, Lee made it perfectly clear that he respects Holloway and a lot, but thinks he will have to do more to earn his shot at the 155-pounds.
“I feel like in time maybe people will stop doing that. We are talking about something bigger than that. I feel like people are too short-sighted. You win one fight and all of a sudden you are the G.O.A.T,” Lee told Luke Thomas on The MMA Hour.
“This is no disrespect to Max at all,” he continued. “Max is one of the very few fighters in the game that I got a lot of respect for and actually consider a good friend. He looked amazing, really. We are all kind of the same generation. I feel like me and him both are in the new generation of fighter. He set the bar last week and it has given me a bit more motivation, a bit more fuel to go out there and put a show on.”
“That’s not the way you become a superstar by automatically let’s just bump up,” he continued. “You see the same thing with Khabib. I told this to Ali, you win one fight and all of a sudden you want to fight Floyd Mayweather for $100 million. Come on, this is not how this game works. It’s a marathon. Keep putting in the work, keep taking out No. 1 contenders and then maybe you will get there eventually.
“You talk about guys like Georges St-Pierre who had to defend the title nine or ten times before they started saying that. I feel that is the way the sport should really be. Let’s get back to the real sport, let’s get back to, we’ve already seen it.”
Even if he makes the move up to lightweight, Lee isn’t convinced Holloway will have a lot of success. He believes that the 10-pounds differential between featherweight and lightweight will prove to be too much the 145-pounds champion.
“Why do you want Khabib to fight Floyd? It’s not even a great fight. Why do you want Max to come up and fight somebody like Khabib or like me? It’s unfair for him to even have to, that’s a lot of weight. People do not understand, we are competitors.
“We are just too big and too strong. It’s too big of a disadvantage. I feel like it needs to be a clear playing field, and then that’s when you really see the best fight.”
Watch the full interview: