Beneil Dariush didn’t expect Tony Ferguson to accept the fight.
Every since Dariush scored a highlight-reel KO win over Drakkar Klose, he has been calling to face a top-ranked opponent. Unfortunately, that did not go his way as he ended up facing Scott Holtzman and then Diego Ferreira. After two more wins, Dariush gets his shot against Tony Ferguson at UFC 262.
“No, I did not. I was expecting a big name after beating Drakkar Klose. Every time I won a fight, I thought I’d get a big name and nothing,” Dariush said on Just Scrap Radio on BJPENN.com. “I was shocked but very happy when I got the offer to fight Tony Ferguson. At that point, Ali (Abdelaziz) didn’t even need to call me, when he hears that name just say yes. I told Ali if any of these top guys say yes, just sign the contract, don’t even call me.”
Once he got the contract offer to face Ferguson, Dariush knew he would have to prepare for the unusual tactics “El Cucuy” does in a fight. However, Dariush says he plans to match Ferguson’s craziness.
“At this point, it’s just train as hard as I can, be prepared as possible, and just match his craziness,” Dariush explained. “He’s going to be wild at some points, but I can’t be intimated by it.”
In the lead-up to the fight, he heard all camp that he can’t rush anything as he knows Ferguson knows how to fight hurt. When Beneil Dariush helped Justin Gaethje prepare for El Cucuy, “The Highlight” said the same thing.
Yet, for Dariush, he knows the way he fights, it will be hard for him to not rush anything.
“I helped Justin prepare for Tony. That’s what Justin said (Tony knows how to fight hurt so you can’t rush anything), and I was like I don’t know if I can do that,” Dariush said. “That’s not my style. Maybe I will try, but if I smell blood, I will go for the kill.”
Although Dariush says he isn’t sure about not rushing anything, he says the game plan is simple against Ferguson. He knows he has to pressure them El Cucuy and search for the finish. If he doesn’t get the stoppage win that he wants, he knows it will be a very entertaining 15 minutes for the fans.
“I know you aren’t supposed to tell people your game plan. But, it’s to step in there and look for a finish from minute one to minute 15. I don’t know how the finish will come,” Dariush said. “But, it’s going to be a spectacular 15 minutes or a finish and shoot, the finish could go either way.”
If Beneil Dariush gets his hand raised, he isn’t sure what it will do for him in the division. He knows the winner of Dustin Poirier-Conor McGregor 3 will get the next title shot.
However, for Dariush, he says he is finding inspiration in Max Holloway’s rise up the featherweight ranks to earn the title and says he plans to do the same.
“It’s weird. I win this next fight and could not even be close to a title shot, that’s the crazy part. I could have a safe fight and do all the right things and win the fight and I won’t even be the second title contender,” Dariush concluded. “There’s Conor, Dustin, Justin Gaethje. It’s an interesting division. But, I just think to myself that I saw Max Holloway win like 10 fights in a row before getting a title shot. I’m not going to complain and continue to do what I’m doing.”
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