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Dariush, Oliveira expect title shot vs. Makhachev with win at UFC 289


UFC lightweight Beneil Dariush said Wednesday that the promotion has promised him the next title shot in the division if he beats former champion Charles Oliveira on Saturday in the co-main event of UFC 289 in Vancouver.

"I spoke with (UFC chief business officer) Hunter (Campbell) when we rebooked this fight, and that's what they said. I'll be the No. 1 contender," Dariush said, according to MMA Junkie.

Dariush and Oliveira were originally set to fight at UFC 288, but the bout was moved to UFC 289 after Oliviera suffered an injury. Oliveira - currently the No. 1 lightweight contender - also expects another shot at UFC gold if he defeats Dariush.

"For sure," Oliveira said. "Whoever wins (Saturday's) fight is going to go for the title. I'm next. I'm in line for it."

The Brazilian is coming off a second-round submission loss to current champ Islam Makhachev in October in a fight that was for the vacant 155-pound belt. Oliveira was stripped of the title in May 2022 after missing weight for his second defense versus Justin Gaethje. He then submitted Gaethje in the first round, vacating the title.

"About the Islam fight, I didn't watch it. It wasn't me. I wasn't there," said Oliveira, who added that he's heading into UFC 289 as a "new" version of himself.

If Dariush gets a title shot, the 34-year-old is optimistic he can upset Makhachev.

"There's nothing really he does that I can't do better," said Dariush, the No. 4 lightweight contender who's riding an eight-fight win streak.

He added: "I know that people will disagree, but they used to say I can't wrestle with these guys. Last fight I showed it. Now we're talking about jiu-jitsu. Next is going to be striking. I can do it all. That's really what I want to show the world."

Dariush most recently beat Mateusz Gamrot via unanimous decision at UFC 280 in October.

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