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Yair Rodriguez defends inclusion of custom title, reveals unique link between UFC 290 belt and Disney-Pixar movie ‘Coco’

Yair Rodriguez was front and center at the UFC 290 media day with two championship titles, the interim strap he earned by defeating Josh Emmett at UFC 284 in Perth and the recently-gifted custom strap designed by Mexican artists Jacobo and María Angeles.

Not surprisingly, “El Pantera” got some pushback by fans on social media.

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“I have had many people like, ‘oh look at this guy, he’s already bragging around with his belt,’” Rodriguez told reporters (transcribed by Cageside Press). “This is a gift from my management team, and these guys, which I really truly appreciate, because it’s unique. You guys can see the Mexican art on it, and it’s a beautiful piece. I’m proud of having it here, presenting it to you guys. So you guys have something to say to the UFC. Something like this would be cool for the future.”

Rodriguez, who was born in Parral, Chihuahua, Mexico, revealed the link between the UFC 290 belt and the Disney-Pixar movie Coco, which focuses on a young Mexican musician who travels to the Land of the Dead to discover more about his family’s history.

“Basically, the movie is based on the family that made this,” Rodriguez continued. “Those are of course cartoon animations, but it’s also a real family. The artist is Jacobo and Maria Angeles, they’re from Oaxaca, Mexico. All you guys can see, it’s not printed, it’s handmade. Dot by dot, line by line, it’s handmade, by Oaxacan artists, these guys. If you guys get close to it, you guys can see the details it has. All the colors are made naturally. There is nothing chemical on it. Flowers and stuff, they mix flowers, and they mix all these crazy colors that are all natural. This is a unique piece. It doesn’t have a price tag on it, because it’s unique.”

Get a closer look at the custom title here.

Rodriguez (15-3, 1 NC) will attempt to unify the division titles when he collides with reigning featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski in the UFC 290 pay-per-view (PPV) main event this Sat. night (July 8, 2023) at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Remember that will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 290 fight card right here, starting with the early ESPN+ “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard on ESPN/ESPN+/ABC at 8 p.m. ET, before the PPV main card start time at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN+ PPV.

To check out the latest and greatest UFC 290: “Volkanovski vs. Rodriguez” news and notes be sure to hit up our comprehensive event archive right here.

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