Featherweight phenom Aaron Pico has his next assignment set.
On Thursday, Eurosport’s Marcel Dorff was first to report that Pico (9-3) would face UFC vet Jeremy Kennedy (17-3, 1NC) at Bellator 277 in April. Pico subsequently confirmed the booking on his Instagram story.
Additionally, Bellator officials announced three other fights for the San Jose event: Theo Haig vs. Alan Benson at middleweight, Edwin De Los Santos vs. Alberto Mendez at flyweight, and a bantamweight scrap between Bobby Seronio III and Calob Ramirez.
Pico, now training at Jackson-Wink MMA in New Mexico after starting his career as part of Team Bodyshop under Antonio Mckee, was a Cadet World Championships gold medal winner in freestyle wrestling, and placed second at the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team Trials. Also a former Junior Golden Gloves champion in boxing, he’s fought the entirety of his MMA career under the Bellator banner.
Despite some early hiccups when facing steps up in competition, Pico has won his last five fights, securing a finish in four of those bouts. In his last outing, Pico dominated fellow top prospect Justin Gonzales, earning a one-sided unanimous decision victory at the end of three rounds.
In Jeremy Kennedy, Pico will be getting another step up, as the Canadian is a veteran of both the UFC and PFL. Since joining Bellator in 2020, Kennedy has posted a 2-1 record, most recently winning a decision against multi-time title challenger Emmanuel Sanchez.
Bellator 277 takes place in San Jose, California at the SAP Center on April 15, 2022, with two title fights topping the card. At light heavyweight, Vadim Nemkov wraps up the light heavyweight grand prix against Corey Anderson, while featherweight champ A.J. McKee runs it back with Patricio Pitbull.