“Clown Show” – Beneil Dariush questions integrity of matchmaking if Michael Chandler is given lightweight title shot next

“Clown Show” – Beneil Dariush questions integrity of matchmaking if Michael Chandler is given lightweight title shot next

Beneil Dariush (L), Michael Chandler (R)

The next couple of months will help unravel a lot of conundrums faced by the media, fans and the UFC itself when it comes to arguably its toughest division – the lightweight division.


One glance at the top 10 of the rankings will reveal what one needs to know about the state of the division. As of now, there is no champion – Charles Oliveira is #1, however (he was stripped of the belt because of missed weight). On 22nd October, he faces #4 lightweight Islam Makhachev.

These two have never crossed each other’s paths. However, Oliveira has beaten the #2, #3 and #5 ranked guys in the division – that is, Dustin Poirier, Justin Gaethje and Michael Chandler respectively. If Oliveira were to regain his title, the matchmakers of the division would find themselves in a dilemma as to who could face the Brazilian next. Never forget, Conor McGregor is right around the corner as well.

Amidst the drama, a lightweight that has long been overlooked by fans and the matchmakers is Beneil Dariush. Dariush is on a 7 fight win streak, having defeated Tony Ferguson last. It is only right that he asks for a title shot next. He could possibly solidify his claims if he beats Mateusz Gamrot, who he faces at UFC 280.


One thing that hasn’t sat well with him at all, is Michael Chandler asking to be given a title shot, after his bout against Dustin Poirier at UFC 281.

Speaking to Helen Yee, he said, “He’s so focused on being entertaining and exciting, he’s lost two fights. So, that’s why I’m leaning more towards Dustin. Honestly, I think he’s just trying to hype himself up.

Continuing, he said (about Michael Chandler getting the title shot), “I don’t think that’s true, but if that does happen, man, I will — that’s basically a clown show. The guy just had a title shot lost and then lost again. It doesn’t make sense. After I beat Gamrot, I don’t think there’s anyone who can step in front of me.

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Beneil Dariush weighs in on Charles Oliveira and Islam Makhachev

Beneil Dariush (C); Charles Oliveira (L) and Islam Makhachev (R)
Beneil Dariush (C); Charles Oliveira (L) and Islam Makhachev (R)

Although he will fight on the main card, he took the chance to dish on the epoch-defining main event.

When Charles Oliveira will take on Islam Makhachev, it will be, so to say, a test of character for both men. While Oliveira sent Michael Chandler, Dustin Poirier and Justin Gaethje packing to the shops, much of Islam Makhachev’s success has come against lesser known opponents.

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Charles Oliveira (on top), takes Dustin Poirier's back before eevntually submitting him at UFC 280
Charles Oliveira (on top), takes Dustin Poirier’s back before eventually submitting him at UFC 280

While it is true that Makhachev has hype surrounding him, being labelled Khabib’s successor, it is also true that he has dismantled each of his opponents till now. The only blemish on his record is a KO loss to Adriano Martins.


Making the case for Oliveira being pound for pound king if he beats Makhachev, Beneil Dariush said, “If Charles wins, yeah, If Islam wins, it’s hard because this is his first ranked guy he’s fought. But on the other hand, Charles has fought so many ranked guys and beat so many ranked guys. I think if Islam wins, he’s definitely top 5 or even top 3 in the pound-for-pound. But I think if Charles wins, he’s No. 1.

Who do you think wins come October 22nd? Let us know!

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