Ahead of his Octagon return at UFC 289 next month, Beneil Dariush has laid out a rather unlikely roadmap to a potential future fight with former undisputed lightweight champion, the retired, Khabib Nurmagomedov.

Dariush, the current #4 ranked lightweight contender, is slated to co-headline UFC 289 next month in Vancouver, British Columbia in the promotion’s return to Canada – taking on former division champion and current #1 ranked contender, Charles Oliveira.

In the midst of a stunning eight-fight winning run, Kings MMA staple, Dariush has been sidelined since he landed a one-sided unanimous decision win over former two-weight KSW gold holder, Mateusz Gamrot at UFC 280 back in October of last year.

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As for the above-mentioned, Khabib, the Dagestan retired from mixed martial arts competition back in October of 2020, successfully unifying the lightweight titles in a submission win over then-interim gold holder, Justin Gaethje, improving to 29-0 as a professional to boot.

Beneil Dariush eyes unlikely fight with Khabib Nurmagomedov

Linked with a slew of potential return fights since his admittedly surprising retirement from combat sports, Khabib’s latest call out has come from Iranian-born grappler, Dariush.

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“Ideally, it would be Khabib (Nurmagomedov), right?” Beneil Dariush told The AllStar during a recent interview. “He’s the best lightweight in the world. Ideally, after beating Charles (Oliveira) and (Islam) Makhachev, I would have an opportunity to fight him, but obviously, I don’t think that’s gonna happen.”

“He’s the lightweight G.O.A.T.,” Beneil Dariush explained. “But guys like GSP (Georges St-Pierre) were the reason why I got into MMA. I would have loved to have fought him.” 

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During his impressive and eye-catching division rise, Dariush has racked up successive victories over the likes of Thiago Moises, Drew Dober, Carlos Diego Ferreira, the above-mentioned, Gamrot, as well as former interim lightweight champion, Tony Ferguson. 

Aspiring mixed martial arts reporter based in Ireland. Follow along at @Ross_Markey on Twitter for all the latest news, fight announcements, opinion, and feature pieces.