Edson Barboza will never be champ, but he’ll always be that guy who’s so dangerous with his Muay Thai that you could ruin anyone in an instant. Beneil Dariush has always been a hard-ass – maybe not a killer like Barboza, but a tough fight for anyone not able to cope with his durability.

The first round opens with Dariush looking sharp and accurate with his left hand and his low-kicks. The Brazilian fires back, but he’s getting marked up, and with each successive moment he has to absorb punishment while trying to set up, you have to think that Dariush’s pressure is going to wilt him. Dariush is doing everything right.

Then comes Round 2, and when Dariush starts mixing in takedown attempts, Barboza has another wrinkle he must deal with. But those takedown attempts mean Dariush must change levels when he comes in, and like the kickboxing assassin he is, Barboza times a flying knee to catch his opponent square on the chin. Dariush collapses to the canvas in a heap.


Results: Edson Barboza def. Beneil Dariush via KO (Flying Knee) at 3:35, R2