Aaron Pico is not getting an easy opponent for his next Bellator MMA appearance.
Christened as one of the most talented prospects in the sport’s history, ESPN reports that Pico will take on Hungary’s Adam Borics at Bellator 222 on June 14th at Madison Square Garden in New York. The entire main card streams live on DAZN.
Pico (4-2) memorably lost his highly anticipated MMA debut to Zach Freeman at MSG in June of 2017, getting choked out in 24 seconds. The freestyle wrestling standout then proceeded to knockout Justin Linn, Shane Kruchten, Lee Morrison, and former Bellator bantamweight title challenger Leandro Higo, setting himself up for a big showdown with veteran contender Henry Corrales this past January. In a wild, action-packed 67-second thriller, Pico went from trying to finish Corrales to getting brutally knocked out for the first time in his young career.
Borics (12-0) boasts an undefeated record and is making his fourth appearance under the Bellator banner. The 25-year-old is coming off a rear-naked choke finish of Josenaldo Silva at Bellator 205 last September. Borics was lined up for a big showdown with Irish prospect James Gallagher at Bellator 196 in his home country, but when Gallagher withdrew to a hand injury, that knocked Borics off the card. This is now a major opportunity for Borics to establish himself as a name to watch in Bellator’s 145 lbs division, especially with a sixteen-man tournament planned for later this year.
Bellator 222 is headlined by a light heavyweight bout between Chael Sonnen and Lyoto Machida. It also features a welterweight tournament semifinal/title bout between Rory MacDonald and Neiman Gracie, as well as a bantamweight title defense for Darrion Caldwell against RIZIN FF champion Kyoji Horiguchi.