The UFC lightweight division has been given a huge fight early on in 2022 as Beneil Dariush and Islam Makhachev have agreed to fight.
The two top-five lightweight contenders have both been making their own individual claims for a potential title shot in their next fight, but it seems they’ve been told another win is needed to make that happen.
Now Dariush and Makhachev will face off on February 26th 2022 in a main-event bout to decide who deserves the next title shot between the two of them.
Dariush has been on a killer win-streak as of late, racking up a seven-fight win streak with victories over the likes of Thiago Moises, Drew Dober, Drakkar Klose, Carlos Diego Ferreira and most recently Tony Ferguson in a dominant performance at UFC 262.
Makhachev’s win streak is even more impressive, racking up an incredible ten-fight run which includes stoppage wins over Dober, Moises and Dan Hooker most recently at UFC 267.
The bout being made between the two of them almost guarantees that Justin Gaethje will get the next title shot, following his win over Michael Chandler at UFC 267 in a brilliant performance.
Dustin Poirier is currently scheduled to face Charles Oliveira at UFC 269 for the 155lbs title on December 11th, and the winner is expected to defend against Gaethje at some point in 2022.
The winner of this Dariush vs Makhachev bout would then be firmly placed to challenge the winner of that fight, having extended their win streak and added a top-five ranked opponent to their resumé.
Ali Abdelaziz, who manages both fighters, was quoted by ESPN as stating this would be a number one contender fight.
“I don’t like it when two guys who I really love have to fight, but these two have worked their whole lives to become a champion and this is a No. 1 contender match,” Abdelaziz said.
“Whoever wins this fight will fight for the title, so who am I to tell them not to fight? They’re at the top and I wish both guys the best of luck.”
Abdelaziz also confirmed that both fighters had agreed and signed new contracts with the UFC as part of the negotiations for this fight.