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Kevin Lee vs Charles Oliveira UFC retrospective: A reminder of what happened in Do Bronx's last fight

Charles Oliveira at the UFC 256 weigh-ins
Charles Oliveira at the UFC 256 weigh-ins
Bhavesh Purohit

When Charles Oliveira fought Kevin Lee back in March 2020, the Brazilian fighter solidified his position of being the most lethal submission artist in the UFC. 'Do Bronx' had 13 submission wins in the promotion before coming into the fight, and in addition to that, he was on a six-fight win streak.

Kevin Lee, on the other hand, had rebounded with a win in his last fight against Gregor Gillespie, following his consecutive losses to Al laquinta and Rafael dos Anjos. The 28-year-old was set to be the toughest challenge of his Brazilian opponent in a fight that was taking place behind closed doors.

Here's how the fight down at the GinΓ‘sio Nilson Nelson arena in Brasilia.

Charles Oliveira delivers a masterclass performance

Charles Oliveira and Kevin Lee competed in the UFC's last event before the COVID-19 pandemic thwarted the world of sports. The UFC was forced to administer the event without spectators, and the promotional events were scrapped as well. Bearing the brunt of the pandemic, the weigh-ins were also postponed to Saturday morning.

Lee missed the weight and was coming into the fight 3.5 pounds overweight. That, however, didn't stop Oliveira from putting on a performance of a lifetime.

Oliveira started on an offensive note right out of the gate, punishing Lee with his jumping kicks to the body. The Brazilian was constantly trying to close the distance and pressurise Lee before he rocked him with straight punches that got Lee's nose bruised up in the first minute of the first round.

Lee took the fight to the ground and the American had no response to Oliveira's superior Brazilian jiu-jitsu. The 31-year-old Brazilian frequently caught Lee in a heelhook, and was able to dictate the fight while being on his back.

'The Motown Phenom', however, ended the round on a high note after he landed some nasty punches and elbows on Oliveira.

The second round commenced in a far more competitive manner, as both the fighters exchanged a string of heavy blows, before Oliveira caught Lee with a vicious uppercut that stunned him. The 28-year-old Lee looked the more weathered of the two following the rigorous grappling session in the first round.

Oliveira displayed his shrewd kickboxing, which forced Lee to land a takedown. The Brazilian fighter, yet again, used his Brazilian jiu-jitsu and made multiple armbar and triangle choke attempts, but Lee was able to scramble out of the danger.

The Motown Phenom enjoyed formidable ground control time over Oliveira before closing the round with some good elbows. Lee was aware that he must win the third round as Oliveira appeared to have edged him in the first two.

The American fighter started the third round aggressively with overhand punches and mixed it up with some kicks to the body. Lee attempted for a single-leg takedown, but Oliveira caught him in a guillotine choke, which ultimately made The Motown Phenom tap.

After the stoppage, Lee attempted a double-leg takedown on Oliveira before the referee had to remind him that he has lost the fight.

What's next for Charles Oliveira?

Du Bronx is set to take on Tony Ferguson at UFC 256 and a win against 'El Cucuy' will help him skyrocket his way up the lightweight rankings. Oliveira is on a seven-fight win streak, which usually should be good enough for a fighter to break into the title picture.

If the 31-year-old indeed manages to get the better of Ferguson, he will certainly establish himself as one of the top contenders for the UFC lightweight belt.


Edited by James McGlade

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