Amanda Nunes and Irene Aldana headline UFC 289 in Vancouver, but the people's main event happens one fight earlier. Charles Oliveira challenges Beneil Dariush in the co-main slot, as two of the best lightweights in the world slug it out for the next 155-pound title shot.
UFC 289 takes place June 10 at Rogers Arena, where prelims begin at 7 p.m. ET and the main card starts at 10 p.m.
Dariush (-150) is a slight favorite over the former champion Oliveira.
UFC 289: Beneil Dariush vs Charles Oliveira Betting Odds
Odds as of June 5
According to our odds calculator, Dariush's -150 odds translate to a 60% implied chance of victory and a $100 bet pays out $166.67. Oliveira's +125 odds give him a 44.44% chance to win and a $100 bet pays out $225.
How To Watch UFC 289: Nunes vs Aldana
Here's how to watch this pay-per-view showcase.
UFC 289: Nunes vs Aldana Full Card & Betting Odds
Here's Saturday's lineup for UFC 289.
Odds as of June 5
Dariush vs Oliveira Tale Of The Tape
|Fighter||Beneil Dariush||Charles Oliveira|
|Record||22-4-1 (16-4-1 UFC)||33-9 (21-9 UFC)|
|Avg. Fight Time||9:30||6:57|
|Sig. Strikes Per Minute||3.81||3.48|
|Sig. Strikes Absorbed Per Minute||2.55||3.20|
|Takedowns Per 15 Minutes||1.95||2.37|
Dariush vs Oliveira Preview: Who Wins this Electric Lightweight fight?
This is just glorious matchmaking by the UFC in a Fight Of The Year candidate.
How Dariush Wins
This bout could go one of two ways. In one scenario, Dariush and Oliveira roll around the mat for 15 minutes as each fighter tries to secure a grappling edge. Oliveira loves taking the back, while Dariush is as flexible and elusive as it gets at avoiding submissions. The more this bout rolls on the ground, the greater the advantage for Oliveira.
In another outcome, these two lightweights stand and slug. To me, that style favors Dariush. He's stronger than Oliveira on the feet and fights with less frantic energy than the Brazilian. In his last bout vs Mateusz Gamrot at UFC 280, "Benny" stayed very composed in threatening positions, ultimately rising to his feet and pounding away with kicks and punches. If this fight is a slow dance instead of a mosh pit, Dariush will win.
How Oliveira wins
Charles gets knocked down in basically all his fights. Against Michael Chandler, Dustin Poirier and Justin Gaethje, Oliveira got walloped in the first round, slumped to the ground but rallied back for a victory. Chandler ran out of steam, while Gaethje and Poirier gave their backs for a submission. Dariush won't be so easy to wrangle but that bull-rush strategy remains the best option.
While Dariush is a very talented grappler, Oliveira is wildly creative with his jiu-jitsu, meaning there's a strong chance Dariush can tumble himself into something dangerous. The Brazilian loves pressure, so if he steps up early and cracks Dariush (or gets cracked himself and ends up on the ground), that's a fine outcome. From there, the mat becomes an ocean, and Oliveira is a great white.
Dariush vs Oliveira Pick
Dariush has battled for some decision wins lately but Oliveira has been a polar opposite. 18 of Charles' last 19 fights have finished inside the distance. 18 of 19! That is a mind-boggling finish rate, so, whether Dariush wants to dance or not, Oliveira will bring the heat, guaranteeing an early stoppage. Unfortunately for him, I see Dariush coming out on top.