Beneil Dariush was frustrated to see Islam Makhachev call out Leon Edwards after UFC 286.
After Edwards defended his belt with a majority decision win over Kamaru Usman, Makhachev took to social media to call out the Brit for the two to fight in October for the welterweight title. It would be a big fight, but Dariush says he doesn’t understand why the lightweight champ is already looking at trying to become a champ-champ.
“I don’t understand. What about title defenses? I don’t know what’s going on with him, why? Maybe he’s having a hard time making weight at ’55, so he’s like let’s go to ’70 and relax. Honestly, I don’t get it,” Dariush said to Submission Radio. “I think he needs to focus on his division. There are a lot of good fighters in this division, maybe in my opinion, the best division. I don’t know why he’s trying to run off to other divisions.”
Although Makhachev called out Edwards, it’s likely that the Brit will face Colby Covington next. With that, Makhachev will have to remain at 155lbs and defend his title. The hope for Dariush is he can get past Charles Oliveira at UFC 288 and secure the title shot.
However, if for some reason the UFC does book Edwards-Makhachev, Beneil Dariush doesn’t see it going well for Makhachev.
“I would assume a decision for Leon. For sure a decision but Leon could possibly finish him. The issue is, Makhachev from what I notice, he seems to have a strength advantage nearly in all of his fights, and he uses it really well. The few fights that he hasn’t it, for example, Arman Tsarukyan, for example, Volkanovski, he seems to really struggle when he doesn’t have that strength advantage. Fighting a guy like Leon, okay you are not cutting weight, I get it, but Leon can go five rounds, Leon can wrestle, Leon can get up, and Leon can stay accurate,” Dariush said.
“I just don’t think it will be a good matchup for Makhachev. Honestly, I have talked about this before, Leon right now is the more well-rounded fighter I can watch,” Dariush continued. “He can strike, he can wrestle, he can do jiu-jitsu and he can put it all together really well including his feints and head movement, he’s a really tough matchup for people.”
Although Dariush thinks Edwards would beat Makhachev, it is a fight that could happen in the future. If both men continue to defend their titles and run out of contenders, perhaps it does get booked. But, Dariush makes it clear that it doesn’t make sense for the two to fight next time out.