UFC lightweight contender Beneil Dariush has looked back on the incident that led to his withdrawal from UFC Vegas 49.
On the February 26 card, Dariush was set to headline against Islam Makhachev in what was widely expected to serve as a title eliminator.
But with just over a week to go before the contest, it was announced that the Iranian-American had pulled out after suffering an injury in training, later confirmed to be a broken fibula.
Dariush Knew The Injury Was Serious
Now almost a week beyond the event and some time after the injury, Dariush has detailed the moment his hopes of securing a title shot last month crumbled.
During an interview with ESPN MMA’s Brett Okamoto, the 32-year-old revealed that a botched takedown caused his fibula to snap, admitting that the mistake that led to the painful moment was down to his own misjudgment.
“Woke up, feeling super good, weight was the best it had ever been. I was 171 in the morning, and I was like, ‘Man, this is incredible,’” Dariush recalled. “I went into practice. I’ve been feeling so good, I’ve been having people alternate. I’ve been making sure I have fresh guys on me all the time. That was basically what I was doing. I had a striker first, then I put a collegiate wrestler on me, only wrestling situations, and then I had one more guy after that. On my third guy, it was me who actually made the mistake.
“I grabbed my partner, I lifted him up, and as I was about to bring him down, my toe got stuck in the mat like never before,” Dariush continued. “When I brought him down, I brought him down over my knee and over my ankle, and the way my ankle twisted, I don’t even know, but it ended up snapping fibula.”
At that moment, Dariush knew this wasn’t an injury he’d be able to quickly overcome. While this was not the lightweight’s first dance when it comes to broken bones, he says the sound of the crack was worse than any he’d experienced before.
“I got a nice little crack in there… It’s just like, ‘Oh God, no, no, no, please no.’ I kinda had a feeling man, as soon as it happened,” said Dariush. “Because I haven’t heard a crack like that in my leg ever before. I’ve broken my chest before, and I remember the crack. And I’ve broken my foot and toes in my other legs, and I heard a crack. This one sounded worse than the previous. I knew something was up.”
Fortunately for Dariush, after seeing multiple physicians, it’s now been confirmed he will be able to avoid surgery and even return to training in as early as eight weeks. That will likely see him begin preparation for a re-booked title eliminator with Makhachev.
Is it the right decision to re-book Beneil Dariush’s fight with Islam Makhachev later in 2022?