Los Angeles — Count Aaron Pico among the large number of MMA fighters keen to try their hand at professional boxing.
Ever since Conor McGregor crossed over to the sweet science in 2017, MMA to boxing has been all the rage. These days, it’s been more a case of fighters set up as attractions, in bouts with the likes of Jake Paul. For Pico, however, the move makes sense — he was a national Golden Gloves Junior champion back in 2009.
“I want to get some boxing fights in, it’s always been a goal of mine. So we’ll have to see,” Pico (9-3) told Cageside Press in an exclusive interview on Monday, ahead of his return at Bellator 277. “Maybe one of these days when Jake Paul fights, I could fight on the undercard. I would love to do that.”
The undercard placement is something that would allow Pico to “get my feet wet in the boxing game,” he noted. And while some fighters might bristle at fighting under a Youtube celebrity, Pico isn’t among them. With Jake Paul comes ample exposure, for one thing. “I know that when Jake Paul, whenever he fights, it’s on Showtime, his last one. So if I can get on the undercard, just dip my feet in boxing, I would love it. So hopefully that can happen.”
Next up, however, Pico has a short-notice opponent to contend with: Adli Edwards.
“Unfortunately, Jeremy Kennedy, not a lot of people know that he broke his orbital, about a week ago,” Pico told us on that front. “I wish him a speedy recovery; the only advice I have to give him is if you’re going to spar that hard a week out from a fight, you probably should wear some head gear. That’s probably the smartest thing. But it is what it is. A new opponent, 9-1, he [Edwards] stepped up on short notice. And he’s no slouch. He’s a DII All American, he’s got a wrestling background, quite a good striker. So it’s a good obstacle for me, and it’s a good challenge and puzzle for us to solve, and we’re excited.”
From the first time we interviewed Aaron Pico right up to fight number 13 this Friday at Bellator 277, Pico admits that’s he’s grown a lot on his mixed martial arts journey.
“To see the steps that I’ve taken, it’s quite crazy, because I’ve just learned so much about the game, about myself,” he said. “And I’ve had to overcome a lot of obstacles, but I’m enjoying it. I enjoyed every single moment.” Of course, looking back, admitted Pico, the losses sucked — but they also made him who he is today. “So I’m excited about the future, and what this sport has to offer me,” he continued, adding that he’ll “just stay in the process and have fun.”
Watch our full interview with Bellator 277’s Aaron Pico above. The event takes place this Friday, April 15, 2022 at the SAP Center in San Jose, CA.