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Alexander Volkanovski vs. Yair Rodriguez title unification bout targeted for UFC 290 in July

MMA: JUL 02 UFC 276
Alexander Volkanovski
Photo by Alejandro Salazar/PxImages/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Alexander Volkanovski is targeted to once again put his featherweight championship on the line during the UFC’s International Fight Week.

Multiple people with knowledge of the promotion’s plans confirmed to MMA Fighting that a bout between Volkanovski and interim champ Yair Rodriguez is in the works for UFC 290, which takes place July 8 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Fox Sports Australia first reported the bout was being discussed for the event. Verbal agreements are in place for the title unification bout.

Volkanovski enters the octagon in unfamiliar territory — coming off of a loss after dropping a close decision to lightweight champion Islam Makhachev at UFC 284 in February. “The Great” is undefeated at 145 pounds in the UFC, as he looks to defend his title for the fifth time. Volkanovski defeated Max Holloway for the third time at UFC 276, which was the capper of International Fight Week in July 2022.

Rodriguez enters the bout with victories in two straight, and three of his past four. In his most recent appearance, “El Pantera” stopped Josh Emmett via second-round submission at UFC 284 to become the interim featherweight champion.

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