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Angela Lee's Possible Retirement Looms After Tragic Loss of Sister, Says ONE CEO

In a recent Facebook Live session, ONE Championship CEO Chatri Sityodtong addressed the uncertain future of atomweight champion Angela Lee.

Sityodtong revealed that Lee is leaning towards retirement from mixed martial arts following the heartbreaking death of her sister, Victoria Lee, who was also a talented ONE Championship athlete. The 18-year-old Victoria tragically passed away in December of last year, leaving the Lee family devastated.

"Angela Lee is likely not coming back due to the loss of her sister," Sityodtong announced during the Facebook Live session, reflecting on Angela's potential retirement.

While Angela Lee has not made a definitive decision, Sityodtong shared with the South China Morning Post that the promotion intends to crown an interim atomweight champion in her absence. The focus is on arranging a matchup between Stamp Fairtex and UFC veteran Seo Hee Ham, with the interim title on the line.

The CEO also confirmed that Angela's older brother, Christian Lee, who holds the ONE lightweight and welterweight titles, will be taking a break for the remainder of 2023. However, he expressed Christian's intention to return to competition in 2024. In the meantime, ONE Championship plans to establish interim champions in both the lightweight and welterweight divisions until Christian Lee's comeback.

"Angela is still undecided on her return, but could likely retire," Sityodtong stated. "Stamp [Fairtex] versus [Seo Hee] Ham is interim [for the atomweight division]."

“I spoke to Christian, he wants to fight 100 percent but he will take the rest of the year off. He will return next year. We will do interim title fights in both divisions this year to keep everything moving.”

Since the tragic loss of their sister six months ago, neither Angela nor Christian Lee has directly addressed their future in the sport.

While no official announcements have been made regarding the contenders for the interim lightweight and welterweight titles, preparations are underway for these highly anticipated bouts later this year.

The potential retirement of Angela Lee, a formidable athlete who has captured the hearts of fans worldwide, marks a significant turning point in the world of MMA. Known for her dynamic fighting style and indomitable spirit, Lee has been an inspiration to many throughout her career.

Should Lee choose to retire, the sport would bid farewell to a remarkable talent, but her decision to prioritize her well-being and healing should be respected above all.

As the MMA community awaits Angela Lee's final decision, ONE Championship remains committed to keeping the momentum going by introducing interim title fights in the lightweight and welterweight divisions this year.

The path forward for both the Lee siblings and the promotion will undoubtedly be challenging, but their determination and resilience will continue to inspire fighters and fans alike as they navigate this difficult period.


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