The former interim lightweight title contender had already suffered through a brutal weight cut earlier in the week that ultimately saw him step on the scale 2 1/2 pounds over the limit. He followed that up with a back-and-forth fight against Oliveira that ended when Lee tapped out to a guillotine choke submission in the third round.
He makes no excuses for his performance, which is one of the reasons why the 27-year-old Detroit native is so down on himself in the aftermath of the loss.
“I got choked,” Lee said about the finish. “I think the fight was going good. I just got choked. I really can’t put it on nothing else but that.”
After earning an interim title shot following a 16-2 start to his career, Lee has fallen on harder times lately posting just a 2-4 mark over his past six fights.
His latest setback coupled with the bad weight cut has Lee re-thinking his future as he plans to take an extended break before booking his next fight inside the Octagon.
“I think lightweight’s still my home. I’ve just got to fine tune some things. But I’m going to take a long time,” Lee explained. “I kind of rushed into this fight. It will probably be a good minute before y’all see me again.
“I think I’ve got to evaluate some things. I feel like my camp was great. My coaches told me all the right things to do. I abandoned it. It’s all on me on this one. It’s going to be maybe a few years or so.”
Over the course of his past four losses, Lee has faced serious adversity due to his ground game with defeats coming by guillotine choke, arm triangle choke and triangle choke.
Those submissions in particular have been haunting Lee, which is one of the reasons why he’s contemplating a long break from the sport to get his act together.
“A lot more jiu-jitsu for sure,” Lee said about his plans during the time off. “I keep losing fights by choke and these guys ain’t even choking me. I’m getting choked.
“I think I’m choking myself. I’ve got to figure out why.”