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Charles Oliveira vs. Beneil Dariush full fight preview | UFC 289

UFC 280: Oliveira v Makhachev Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Lightweight finishers Charles Oliveira and Beneil Dariush will collide this weekend (Sat., June 10, 2023) at UFC 289 inside Rogers Arena in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

Here it is, ladies and gentleman: the best fight on the card, the people’s main event, the reason to even consider forking over one’s hard-earned cash for this outright insult to Canadian fight fans. Oliveira vs. Dariush is a shining light, a reason to get out of bed in the morning ... or at least dig around the covers to find a TV remote. Oliveira is the most exciting champion in recent memory (or possibly ever), and he’s eager to get back in the title picture. Dariush has won eight straight, putting on stellar showings that probably should’ve earned him a title shot already. The stakes are clear ... and the excitement is high.

Let’s take a closer look at the keys to victory for each man:

LIVE! Watch UFC 293 PPV On ESPN+ Here!

MASSIVE MIDDLEWEIGHT MATCH! Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) makes its highly anticipated return to Sydney, Australia, for the first time in five years on Sat., Sept. 9, 2023, with a 185-pound world title fight inside Qudos Bank Arena. In the ESPN+-streamed pay-per-view (PPV) main event, Middleweight roost-ruler, Israel Adesanya, plans to silence No. 5-seeded contender, Sean Strickland. In UFC 293’s hard-hitting Heavyweight co-main event, No-6-ranked fan favorite, Tai Tuivasa, locks horns with towering Russian, Alexander Volkov (No. 8).

Don’t miss a single second of EPIC face-punching action!

Charles Oliveira

Record: 33-9 (1)
Key Wins: Dustin Poirier (UFC 269), Justin Gaethje (UFC 274), Michael Chandler (UFC 262), Tony Ferguson (UFC 256), Kevin Lee (UFC Fight Night 170), David Teymur (UFC Fight Night 144), Myles Jury (UFC on FOX 17), Will Brooks (UFC 210)
Key Losses: Islam Makhachev (UFC 280), Paul Felder (UFC 218), Anthony Pettis (UFC on FOX 21), Frankie Edgar (UFC 162)
Keys to Victory: An injection of confidence and cardio proved all that was necessary to turn Charles Oliveira from fun contender to dominant champion. There is no better finisher than “Do Bronx,” whose potent combination of Muay Thai and jiu-jitsu can quickly buzzsaw even elite opposition.

In this bout, I’d consider the jiu-jitsu to be something of a wash. Both men are excellent on the canvas and unlikely to submit the other unless one is hurt badly. The risk for Oliveira is that he gets outwrestled, because his complex and aggressive bottom game is unlikely to deter Dariush from chaining takedowns.

As such, Oliveira has to put more energy than usual into defending takedowns. Often, he’s willing to concede bottom position because he’s confident in his ability to scramble and wrestle up, but that’s a risky proposition against his fellow black belt. If he fights harder against the initial shot, it’s a better idea than fighting off his back.

On the feet, Oliveira has to maintain his aggression while staying measured. I’d like to see Oliveira working his teep to destabilize Dariush’s stance a bit, which will help prevent him from loading up on his powerful left side shots. Pursuing the clinch and knees to the belly could also take some wind from Dariush’s sails, helping Oliveira set up his big right hand.

Beneil Dariush

Record: 22-4-1
Key Wins: Mateusz Gamrot (UFC 280), Carlos Diego Ferreira (UFC Vegas 18), Tony Ferguson (UFC 262), Drakkar Klose (UFC 248), Rashid Magomedov (UFC Fight Night 98), Drew Dober (UFC Fight Night 146)
Key Losses: Edson Barboza (UFC Fight Night 106), Alexander Hernandez (UFC 222), Michael Chiesa (UFC on FOX 19)
Keys to Victory: A top-tier jiu-jitsu black belt with strong wrestling, Dariush’s Muay Thai has developed wonderfully over the years. The Southpaw throws EVERYTHING from his left side with POWER. He blasts left kicks, left knees, and left hands, forcing his opponent to try to read which crushing blow is coming.

Islam Makhachev wrote the blue print for Dariush to follow. He frustrated Oliveira with his movement, refusing to engage with Oliveira on his terms. The Brazilian kept chasing — it’s his nature — and Makhachev was pretty easily able to time him with heavy counter shots and the occasional takedown.

Dariush is a different fighter than the Dagestani champion, but he has similar tools. He’s a Southpaw with heavy hands and powerful kicks. He’s a more natural striker than Makhachev, but he still has the wrestling and ground skills necessary to present Oliveira with that same dual-pronged threat.

The big question is whether Dariush can match Makhachev’s defense and movement. He’s not historically the hardest man to hit, so an extra bit of focus and preparation on defensive responsibility will help ensure he’s able to avoid Oliveira’s offense and get him reaching on his shots.

Bottom Line

A Lightweight title shot is on the line ... maybe.

Allegedly, both Oliveira and Dariush have been promised a shot at Islam Makhachev with a victory this weekend. It hasn’t been that long since Oliveira lost his belt to Makhachev, but I also don’t believe the Brazilian performed to his full potential in their first meeting, so it’s an easy enough sell. Dariush is a major threat to the champion stylistically, and his win streak is more than deserving.

At the same time, it’s very possible that the winner of the BMF title bout between Dustin Poirier and Justin Gaethje upstages either Oliveira or Dariush. Money talks, and neither of those fan favorites have faced Makhachev yet. Neither seem as interesting or threatening of stylet match ups either, but that’s secondary to drawing power.

We’ll just have to wait and see how the division shakes out.

At UFC 289, Charles Oliveira and Beneil Dariush will battle in the co-main event. Which man earns the victory?

Remember that will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 289 fight card right here, starting with the early ESPN+ “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard on ESPN/ESPN+ at 8 p.m. ET, before the PPV main card start time at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN+ PPV.

To check out the latest and greatest UFC 289: “Nunes vs. Aldana” news and notes be sure to hit up our comprehensive event archive right here.

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