Shortly before Alexander Volkanovski attempts to become the new champion, Yair Rodriguez and Josh Emmett will battle for the interim UFC Featherweight Championship at UFC 284.
Rodriguez vs. Emmett was announced on Saturday during the UFC 281 pay-per-view, hours after the promotion confirmed a superfight between undisputed champion Volkanovski and reigning undisputed lightweight champion Islam Makhachev.
UFC 284 will take place on February 12 at the RAC Arena in Perth, Western Australia (due to time differences, the pay-per-view will air in the US on February 11).
In a previous interview, Rodriguez said he was not interested in an interim title fight. Instead, he intended to wait for Volkanovski, whose ambition to hold two titles at the same time was well publicized.
Rodriguez recently said he hasn’t given up on his plan to challenge Wokanovski next.
— Yair Rodriguez (@panteraufc) November 4, 2022
The prospect of a long wait may have convinced the Mexican otherwise as he looks to build on the recent rebound by knocking out former featherweight title challenger Brian Ortega, who followed a loss to ex-champ Max Holloway.
Emmett, meanwhile, has struggled with the wildness of the featherweight division, suffering injuries and layoffs in his quest to hold on. He is currently on a five-fight winning streak and most recently defeated Calvin Kattar by split decision, earning him a place in the conversation when interim title talks surfaced.
The official fight order for UFC 284 has yet to be confirmed. The event is streamed live on ESPN+ pay-per-view.