After falling short at UFC 289, what’s next for Beneil Dariush?

Jun 10, 2023; Vancouver, BC, Canada; Beneil Dariush reacts before fighting against Charles Oliveira during UFC 289 at Rogers Arena. Mandatory Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports

This past Saturday night in the co-main event of UFC 289, we saw a potential title eliminator in the lightweight division. Former champion Charles Oliveira (34-9) took on Beneil Dariush (22-5-1) who was looking to win his ninth fight in a row.

Beneil Dariush has a resume that warranted a title shot. Anytime you can win eight fights in a row in the UFC’s lightweight division, it usually means a title shot is coming with it. However, Dariush needed one more signature win and faced his toughest challenge to date in former champion Charles Oliveira.

When the fight started, Oliveira came right at Dariush and there was a lot of wild exchanges early. They ended up clinching where Oliveira went for a trip. However, Dariush countered beautifully and ended up on top. From there, Dariush would go on to control most of the round.

However, with about 90 seconds left, Oliveira was able to get the fight back to the feet. Once he did, he gave Dariush no room to breathe. A huge head kick rocked Dariush and Oliveira followed it up with big shots. Dariush shot for a takedown but ended up on his back.

From there, Oliveira started raining down with punches and the fight was stopped. A huge win for the former UFC champion but a crushing defeat for Dariush.

What’s next after UFC 289?

This is such a tough fight for Dariush to swallow. Like I said, his resume warranted a title shot, however, you have to be willing to beat all the best guys in the world and Dariush was willing to try. He just wasn’t better than Do Bronx on Saturday night.

Where does Dariush go from here? While it’s crushing because he was so close to a title shot, I don’t think he moves too far back with this loss. In looking at the rankings, I think there’s a perfect fight with the man that’s ranked sixth in the division.

That man is Rafael Fiziev. Fiziev also had a lengthy winning streak snapped earlier this year. His was snapped by Justin Gaethje. Both men want to get right back in the title picture and both find themselves in a similar spot. Just seems like the right fight for the UFC to make right now.

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