Tai­wanese MMA fighter Rocky Lee learns de­feat in his de­but bout for UFC

The China Post - - LOCAL - BY CHI- HAO JAMES LO

The Ul­ti­mate Fight­ing Cham­pi­onship’s (UFC) first Tai­wanese fighter, Rocky Lee ( ) on Satur­day, April 11 lost his UFC de­but to fel­low debu­tant Tay­lor Lapilus of France dur­ing the open­ing match of UFC Fight Night 64.

Fol­low­ing in the foot­steps of Kaoh­si­ung-born Amer­i­can fighter Andy Wang ( ), Lee is the sec­ond Tai­wan-born fighter and the first Repub­lic of China cit­i­zen to be signed to the UFC. The or­ga­ni­za­tion is also ar­guably the world’s big­gest and most pres­ti­gious in­ter­na­tional mixed mar­tial arts (MMA) group, hous­ing mar­tial arts su­per­stars such as the likes of An­der­son Silva, Ronda Rousey and hall-of-fame mem­ber Randy Cou­ture.

Lee was se­lected for his UFC de­but, which took place at the Krakow Arena in Krakow, Poland, af­ter be­com­ing a semi­fi­nal­ist on “The Ul­ti­mate Fighter: China,” a re­al­ity tele­vi­sion show pro­duced by UFC in which fighters are put un­der one roof to train with es­teemed coaches and fighters while hav­ing to fight one an­other.

The Tai­wan-born fighter re­ceived the op­por­tu­nity that granted him an in­ter­na­tional con­tract af­ter se­cur­ing a 3 wins and no losses ca­reer record since his de­but in MMA in 2011. His first bout on UFC marked Lee’s first ca­reer de­feat.

How­ever, the 27- year- old feath­er­weight fighter did not go down with­out a fight. Within sec­onds af­ter the bell rung, Lee shot for a take­down. Though Lee tried to give Lapilus a run for his money dur­ing the en­tire match, the French fighter had the up­per hand in the ma­jor­ity of the 3- round bout, go­ing as far as giv­ing Lee a bloody face dur­ing the sec­ond round of the fight.

Though Lee was taken down by Lapilus who looked for sub­mis­sion op­por­tu­ni­ties the first chance he got, Lee was able to get back on his feet ev­ery time to com­plete the en­tirety of his de­but bout. Un­for­tu­nately, the Tai­wanese fighter was de­feated by unan­i­mous de­ci­sion of the judges.

Ac­cord­ing to sports writer Matt Erick­son from Amer­i­can daily news­pa­per USA To­day, Lee gave the fol­low­ing state­ment dur­ing a post-fight in­ter­view: “I’m feel­ing an­noyed that I lost the fight. But now it’s just back to train­ing so that I can im­prove. He was tough -- he was a bet­ter fighter. But now I will go back to train­ing and move for­ward.”

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