A lightweight showdown between number nine-ranked Beneil Dariush and Russia's Mairbek Taisumov has been added to UFC Fight Night 81 scheduled for Jan. 17 at Boston’s TD Garden. A bantamweight championship match between champion TJ Dillashaw and former champion Dominick Cruz will headline the Fox Sports 1 televised card.
Dariush (12-1) has only faltered once in seven fights since signing with the UFC last year. The 26-year-old Iranian is currently riding a five-fight winning streak, most recently earning a split decision nod over Michael Johnson in August. Dariush had already fought twice this year before that, submitting Daron Cruickshank in March, and defeating Jim Miller via unanimous decision in April.
Taisumov (24-5) is currently 4-1 inside the UFC Octagon and he’s knocked out his last three opponents. Prior to a TKO win over Alan Patrick in June, Taisumov stopped Anthony Christodoulo in January, and Marcin Bandel in October 2014. Although not currently ranked at 155-pounds in the UFC’s official rankings, Taismov has only gone to decision once out of 24 victories. He is definitely one to keep an eye on and a win over Taisumov should ensure his debut on the UFC’s lightweight rankings.
With Bariush-Taisumov now on the card, the UFC Fight Night 81 card includes:
- Bantamweight: T.J. Dillashaw (c) vs. Dominick Cruz – for bantamweight title
- Lightweight: Anthony Pettis vs. Eddie Alvarez
- Heavyweight: Travis Browne vs. Matt Mitrione
- Light Heavyweight: Tim Boetsch vs. Ed Herman
- Lightweight: Paul Felder vs. Daron Cruickshank
- Welterweight: Ben Saunders vs. Patrick Côté
- Light Heavyweight: Sean O'Connell vs. Ilir Latifi
- Lightweight: Francisco Trinaldo vs. Ross Pearson
- Featherweight: Charles Rosa vs. Jimy Hettes
- Bantamweight: Rob Font vs. Patrick Williams
- Lightweight: Beneil Dariush vs. Mairbek Taisumov
- Light Heavyweight: Abdul-Kerim Edilov vs. Francimar Barroso