Lee looks unstoppable in Atlantic City main event


n his first bout since losing a challenge for the interim lightweight title against Tony Ferguson in October, Kevin Lee looked Motown phenomenal against Edson Barboza, surviving a third-round head kick to dominate his opponent and stop him in the fifth round of their UFC Fight Night main event at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City.

Starting in the southpaw stance, Lee fired off several jabs and kicks before putting Barboza on his back in the opening minute of the fight. Lee stayed busy on the mat, landing strikes as he looked to improve position. Midway through the round, Lee got into the mount and scored with several hard punches and elbows, with Barboza having no answers for him.

In the second, Lee picked up where he left off in the previous round, his sharp striking on the already-winded Barboza leading to a slam a minute in. The ground dominance then continued for the next four minutes, with Barboza unable to get to his feet or mount any kind of offense.

Barboza began the third round throwing body kicks, but Lee walked right through them. He didn’t get by the spinning head kick that landed a minute in that had Lee wobbling on unsteady legs. But Lee did have the presence of mind to look for a takedown, and he got it. This time, Barboza got up fairly quickly and the two traded down the stretch, but by the end of the round, Lee had Barboza in trouble once more.

Fired up by his success in the third, Barboza landed hard shots on Lee early in round four, but Lee took them well and scored the takedown. The crowd wasn’t happy, but Lee stayed busy as he kept Barboza grounded and punished him until the end of the round.

Already battered and bruised, Barboza was bloodied by Lee as round five began, but the gutsy Brazilian kept fighting, trying to land a shot like the one he did in the third. But it was not to be, and after referee Keith Peterson halted the bout to replace his mouthpiece, the Octagonside physician stepped in and halted the fight. The official time of the stoppage was 2:18 of the fifth round.

With the win, the No. 6-ranked Lee - who came in overweight for the bout at 157 pounds -improves to 17-3. The No. 5-ranked Barboza falls to 19-6.

Watch Past Fights


Women's Flyweight title challenger Valentina Shevchenko answers questions at the UFC Performance Institute leading into her title fight with The Ultimate Fighter winner Nicco Monatano at UFC 228 Saturday, September 8 only on Pay-Per-View.
On October 6th, 2018 lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov will finally go to war with rival Conor McGregor. To say that Khabib is excited is an understatement: "My dream is to smash this guy."
James Vick is poised to make his UFC main event debut when he takes on Justin Gaethje at Fight Night Lincoln next Saturday.
Edmen Shahbazyan was pushing the action right from the start and was rewarded with a first round knockout on Season 2 of Dana White's Tuesday Night Contender Series to earn a UFC contract. Watch the replays from both seasons anytime on UFC FIGHT PASS.