On Tuesday, the UFC cut star welterweight Kevin Lee.
The news was first reported by Guilherme Cruz and Damon Martin of MMAFighting.com.
— Guilherme Cruz (@guicruzzz) November 30, 2021
Marc Raimondi of ESPN would later say that Lee himself had confirmed the news with him.
Kevin Lee has been released by the UFC, he confirmed with me. Just a brutal stretch for the former title contender, who is not even 30 years old. Lee is currently serving a suspension after testing positive for a drug he was taking for ADHD. @MMAFighting first reported the news.
— Marc Raimondi (@marc_raimondi) November 30, 2021
As Raimondi points out, Lee is currently in the middle of serving a 6 month suspension for testing positive for amphetamines following his loss to Daniel Rodriguez in August 2021. Lee would say that the reason he tested positive was because of the Adderall that he takes to treat his ADHD, which has garnered some fan support around his case for what some consider to be a ridiculous suspension.
Jon Jones & McGregor be doing cocaine everyday. Diaz brothers fight high as fuck, but the UFC heard Kevin Lee takes adderall & said we’ve seen enough. Ok
— ℙ𝕒𝕦𝕝𝕚 ♤ (@AyyItsPauli) November 30, 2021
Regardless of the suspension, Lee has fallen on hard times as of late. He is 2-5 in his last 7 fights. He also suffered from long layoffs after a few injuries including having his knee blown out in his loss to Charles Oliveira.
Lee has also struggled to find the right division for himself. He has consistently struggled to cut down to 155 pounds to compete in the lightweight division. However at only 5′ 9″ he has struggled with not being big enough to compete at 170 pounds in the welterweight division. Many fans have stated that if the UFC were to make a long-proposed 165 pound division, Lee would be the perfect candidate for it, citing his status as an inbetweener as a prime example of why they should make the 165 pound division.
Lee has long been tagged as someone that many believe has what it takes to become a future champion. It looks like that championship will have to be in an organization such as the Professional Fighters League (PFL) or Bellator for now. However, at only 29 years old, it is not impossible that Lee could eventually make a return to the UFC. He had arguably the knockout of the year with a vicious head kick KO over Gregor Gillespie at UFC 244 in 2019.
When Kevin Lee is on form he has the ability to produce the goods 💥pic.twitter.com/7VRqrIBeFQ
— Chamatkar Sandhu (@SandhuMMA) November 30, 2021
Lee made his UFC in 2014 and lost to Tony Ferguson for the interim lightweight championship at UFC 216 in 2017. He is currently 18-7.