UFC lightweight contender Beneil Dariush could fight for gold sooner than expected.
The 33-year-old has been out of action since his decision victory over Tony Ferguson last May. Since that time, Dariush has had a failed booking with Islam Makhachev. The matchup was viewed as a title-eliminator but was canceled after the Iranian fighter suffered an injury.
During the 33-year-old’s time away from the cage, the lightweight division has been turned upside down. The former champion, Charles Oliveira, was stripped of his lightweight gold in May. The Brazilian will now face Makhachev for the vacant title next month.
Ahead of UFC 280, featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski teased he might be the backup fighter for the main event. However, that appears to not be the case. It seems that Dariush is the backup as of now.
Beneil Dariush discussed his return in an interview with MMAFighting. There, the lightweight discussed his return at UFC 280 against Mateusz Gamrot. However, Dariush also revealed that his manager, Ali Abdelaziz, stated that he would headline the card if anything went wrong with Oliveira or Makhachev.
“That’s what [my manager] Ali [Abdelaziz] told me, I was the backup for this. If something goes wrong, they would put me in… Yeah, of course [I’ll make 155 pounds]. It’s not that hard. I make 156. Last time in Texas [at UFC 262], I was pretty much 155 when I fought.” (h/t MMAFighting)
He continued, “What happened was, I got on the scale with the UFC scale, it’s a digital scale, it said 155.2 and I was like OK, and I had underwear on. I got on the one from the athletic commission, they use the weights on the scale, and I got on that one and he was like 156.2. I was like what? So I had to go back and cut a little bit more weight. The whole thing was stupid. So I’m planning on making 155 just like last time.”
Dariush concluded, “…As far as preparing for Islam or Charles, really the way you do that, you be as well-rounded as you can possibly be, in terms of striking, in terms of timing, wrestling, all that stuff, be the best that you can be and then don’t worry about the rest. It’s all going to take care of itself.”
What do you think about Beneil Dariush’s comments? Sound off in the comment section below!This article appeared first on BJPENN.COM