Ortega has twice fought for featherweight gold in the UFC and came up short on both occasions – most recently against reigning champion Alexander Volkanovski in September.
Meanwhile, Rodriguez has not yet challenged for the title but impressed even in defeat last time out, when he was outpointed in a fight of the year contender against former champion Max Holloway.
Ortega (15-2, 1 No Contest) is a jiu-jitsu specialist who has honed his striking over time, while Mexican Rodriguez (13-3, 1 NC) is a versatile and dynamic striker who should represent an interesting foil for the American.
Here’s all you need to know.
When is it?
The event will take place on Saturday 16 July at the UBS Arena in Elmont.
The prelims will start at 4pm BST (8am PT, 10am CT, 11am ET), with the main card following at 7pm BST (11am PT, 1pm CT, 2pm ET).
How can I watch it?
The card will air live on BT Sport in the UK, with the broadcaster’s app and website also streaming the fights.
In the US, ESPN+ will stream the action live, as will the UFC’s Fight Pass.
Ortega – 4/7
Rodriguez – 5/4
Brian Ortega vs Yair Rodriguez (featherweight)
Michelle Waterson vs Amanda Lemos (women’s strawweight)
Li Jingliang vs Muslim Salikhov (welterweight)
Matt Schnell vs Sumudaerji (flyweight)
Shane Burgos vs Charles Jourdain (featherweight)
Lauren Murphy vs Miesha Tate (women’s flyweight)
Ricky Simon vs Jack Shore (bantamweight)
Punahele Soriano vs Dalcha Lungiambula (middleweight)
Bill Algeo vs Herbert Burns (featherweight)
Dustin Jacoby vs Da-Un Jung (light heavyweight)
Dwight Grant vs Dustin Stoltzfus (middleweight)
Phil Rowe vs Abubakar Nurmagomedov (welterweight)
Jessica Penne vs Emily Ducote (women’s strawweight)