Beneil Dariush doesn’t think Michael Chandler should’ve gotten the lightweight title shot.
When Chandler signed with the UFC, he was the backup fighter for the lightweight title fight at UFC 254. He then made his debut at UFC 257 and scored a first-round TKO win over Dan Hooker. After the win, it was revealed Chandler would fight Charles Oliveira for the vacant lightweight title which Dariush doesn’t understand why.
“I’m super surprised,” Dariush told MMA Junkie. “I was shocked. I’m like, ‘Really?’ I understand he’s been in the sport for a long time, so I’m not disrespecting his pedigree, but in the UFC you’ve had one fight with Dan Hooker. It just looked to me like Dan Hooker didn’t show up. I thought they would at least try to get him somebody else. I thought they were. They were trying to get him Justin (Gaethje) and now we’re here. So, (I’m) shocked.”
Although Dariush is disappointed Chandler is getting a title shot, the lightweight contender is still focusing on his own fight against Tony Ferguson. The hope for Dariush is if he beats Ferguson it will cement his case as the next contender.
“I want to go in there and I want to dominate so they can say, ‘Why isn’t this guy talked about for the title?’ Then they start talking about me for the title,” Dariush said. “I don’t know if I’m going to get a title shot off of this (fight with Ferguson). I would like to, don’t get me wrong, but I don’t know. Who else is out there that I can fight also? I’m looking at the rankings, and it’s not like people are coming off of wins in the top 10. I’m going to focus on Tony, and then I’m going to really look at who is next.”
Were you surprised like Beneil Dariush was, that Michael Chandler got a title shot?