It didn’t take as long as Oliveira’s trip to the top of the 155-pound weight class, but Beneil Dariush has been battling it out for over seven years in the Octagon as he waited for his “big” fight. And like Oliveira, when the opportunity came, he seized it. In Dariush’s case, that victory was a shutout over former interim champion Tony Ferguson that shocked many, but that also shouldn’t be a surprise, as Dariush is one of the most well-rounded fighters in the division. And now after he welcomes his daughter into the world and gets his Tesla for his wife, it’s a brand-new day for the Californian at the top of the division.
WHAT’S NEXT? Ranked ninth in the division as of Saturday night, Dariush is likely to make a big leap into the top five when the latest UFC rankings come out, and while a shot at the new champ probably isn’t next, another big fight should be on the horizon. The question is, who will be in the opposite corner? By the time Dariush returns, that answer should be clearer.