by R.C. Samo
Beneil Dariush makes his UFC debut tonight at UFC Fight Night 35 prelims on http://www.ufc.tv/page/
We first met Dariush at his training center, Kings MMA in Huntington Beach, CA where it turns out, the man nicknamed, “The Assyrian Lion,” has the same roots, in the same village that I do. In fact his mother knew my uncle in the old country. It was through this loose connection, that before Dariush opened his mouth, I already knew his mindset, his mentality and his drive.
There are two types of Assyrians that hail from our region of Urmia. The loud and brash, or the quiet and calculated, Dariush is the latter. A man of few words, with intense focus and who is extremely respectful — to his faith, his family, his trainers, his martial arts style and the world that surrounds him.
Tonight’s fight will be against Charlie “The Spaniard” Brenneman, a man who holds a 19-5-0 record, who although, has more MMA experience than Dariush, will be in for a surprise when he realizes he is not just fighting Beneil Dariush, but he is fighting against God, an ancient empire, a tribe, a clan, a village, a family and a survivor, all rolled up into one human being.
I rarely show bias in these profiles, but in this instance, there is no use in even trying. Beneil Dariush, we are supporting you. We wish you health, speed, strength and victory in tonight’s battle with Brenneman.