At the end of October, on October 30, 36-year-old Rafael dos Anjos will face a difficult match against Islam Makhachev, a Dagestani who is seen by many as the legitimate successor of Khabib Nurmagomedov. Islam is currently the fifth-ranked fighter in the UFC lightweight challenger rankings while the former RDA champion is in seventh place.
Makhachev's last appearance was in mid-July and he finished Thiago Moises in the fourth round of the fight with a dominant performance. This was followed by an even bigger "hype" about Islam, and the Dagestani jumped to fifth place even though he defeated the then 14-ranked Moises.
The RDA believes that Islam Makhachev is rising unjustifiably and that his teammate Beneil Dariush deserves such a "hype" more. "We talked about various nonsense on the Internet, but we will finally get the opportunity to settle accounts.
It’s going to be a good fight that can put me in competition to attack the belt, especially now that he has all that ‘hype’ around him." "I will show you that I am alive, that I am still in the game.
I am completely confident that I will beat Makhachev. When you have a guy like Khabib in your corner and Cormier constantly talking about you, it creates too much ‘hype’." "I will give you Beneil Dariush as an example.
He beat the same guys as Makhachev, even better, and was more convincing, but no one talks about him. Islam defeated Thiago Moises and jumped to fifth place, '' the RDA told AG Fight.
It could be said that the words of the former champion have a certain meaning.
As good and convincing as Islam Makhachev has looked so far, the fact is that the Dagestani has not yet fought, let alone defeated top lightweight fighters. Eight wins in a row is an impressive series, but Drew Dober, Thiago Moises, and Arman Tsarukyan are the most famous names Islam has mastered.
These are fighters who are on the brink of the Top 15 and the jump from ninth to fifth challenger place didn’t make much sense after the win against Moises. Beneil Dariush on the other hand is currently in a string of seven wins.
He also defeated Thiago Moises and Drew Dober, but in the last two appearances, he also beat Carlos Diego Ferreira, who was in ninth place at the time, and Tony Ferguson. Dariush as currently, the third-ranked fighter of the challenger rankings is better ranked than Makhachev, but the fact is that Islam really gets far more attention than Beneil who has a nominally better winning streak than him if we take into account the opponents they fought.