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Beneil Dariush on a Charles Oliveira rematch: ‘I really believe, we fight again, I win that fight’

UFC 289: Oliveira v Dariush Photo by Jordan Jones/Getty Images

Beneil Dariush wouldn’t expect a second fight with Charles Oliveira to play out the same as their first.

UFC 289 didn’t go as planned for the perennial top Lightweight contender, Dariush, in June 2023. Facing the former divisional champion, Oliveira, with a title shot on the line, Dariush came up short via a first round technical knockout (punches) loss after a strong start on the ground (watch highlights).

The loss snapped an ultra-impressive eight-fight winning streak for Dariush and reflecting on the performance, Dariush (22-5-1) is confident a rematch plays into his favor.

“It’s not my first time losing and it’s not my first time rebuilding back up,” Dariush said on UFC Unfiltered. “I’ve done it before. To be honest with you, I’m not sure why the fight went the way it did. I didn’t feel, I don’t know, something was missing that night. I’m going to get that fixed, I’m going to figure it out, and I’m going to show a better version for sure.

“I really believe, we fight again, I win that fight,” he concluded. “So, I have to work hard. He was about as strong as I thought he was going to be.”

Dariush has historically rebounded with strong wins after his few career losses. Hoping to return around 2023’s end, the 34-year-old veteran is only expecting to grow further as he’s shown doable in the past.

“I definitely think there’s more meaning to it, something deeper to it,” Dariush said. “It doesn’t hurt to look deeper. You can find things that maybe you didn’t do right and that’s kind of what I’m looking at right now. Trying to figure out what I did wrong.

“I can make up so many excuses, right?” he added. “But then I just take a moment and look back at guys like Aljamain [Sterling]. With him and with Marlon Moraes, look what he did since then. I’m not too stressed out about it. I just know I can build back up and show the world that I am the best.”

While Dariush goes back to the drawing board, Oliveira moves on to a title fight rematch with the champion, Islam Makhachev, at UFC 294 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates on Oct. 21, 2023. UFC 291’s main event result this past weekend (July 29, 2023) also did no favors for Dariush, who will have an uphill battle before getting back toward his dream of becoming a champion.

Justin Gaethje defeated Dustin Poirier via a second round highlight-reel head kick knockout in their Baddest Motherf—ker (BMF) title tilt (watch highlights). Therefore, limiting logical options for Dariush’s next time out.

“I don’t call out a guy like Dustin Poirier because he said he’s not interested in fighting me,” Dariush said. “So, I just leave him alone. The other guys currently available are Michael Chandler, Rafael Fiziev, and Arman Tsarukyan. If it was up to me, it would go basically in [order of] that list. The only reason I have it in that list is because of that rankings.

“I don’t see [Justin] Gaethje fighting until the belt. I think he’ll wait. Makhachev will make a quick turnaround because of Ramadan.”

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