Beneil Dariush will have to wait a little bit longer for his showdown with ex-champ Charles Oliveira.
A person with knowledge of the situation confirmed to MMA Fighting the removal of the pivotal lightweight matchup from its co-headlining spot on the pay-per-view main card of UFC 288 due to an injury to Oliveira. The news was first reported by ESPN Deportes.
UFC 288 takes place May 6 at Prudential Center in Newark, N.J., and is headlined by a bantamweight title fight between champ Aljamain Sterling and ex-champ Henry Cejudo.
Oliveira is six months removed from a failed bid to recapture the UFC lightweight title in a fight against Islam Makhachev at UFC 280. Oliveira was stripped of the belt in May at UFC 274 after missing weight for a fight with Justin Gaethje, whom he submitted in the first round.
Dariush has won eight straight at lightweight, slowly climbing into title contention after several ups and downs at 155 pounds. The 33-year-old vet has waited patiently for a fight that could earn him a title shot, and the booking against Oliveira fit the bill.
The UFC could book a new date for Oliveira vs. Dariush, or Dariush could wait for a title shot, according to one source.
The UFC 288 fight card now includes:
- Aljamain Sterling vs. Henry Cejudo
- Jessica Andrade vs. Yan Xiaonan
- Kron Gracie vs. Charles Jourdain
- Drew Dober vs. Matt Frevola
- Kennedy Nzechukwu vs. Devin Clark
- Khaos Williams vs. Rolando Bedoya
- Marina Rodriguez vs. Virna Jandiroba
- Phil Hawes vs. Ikram Aliskerov
- Rafael Estevam vs. Zhalgas Zhumagulov
- Joseph Holmes vs. Claudio Ribeiro
- Daniel Santos vs. Johnny Munoz
Damon Martin and Guilherme Cruz contributed to this report.