Aaron Pico delivers blistering TKO at Bellator 252 – Press Enterprise

Aaron Pico has always had the boxing and wrestling pedigrees. Now the Whittier native is putting them together and finding success in MMA.

Pico finished his third consecutive fight via a sensational second-round TKO of John de Jesus on Thursday at Bellator 252 at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut.

A former national junior Golden Gloves champion and world-class wrestler, Pico (7-3) used his powerful striking to shoot in for takedowns and administer heavy ground strikes to the 30-year-old southpaw.

Late in the second round, after de Jesus (13-9) fought off Pico’s pressure from the top and rose from the canvas, Pico timed a right hook beautifully and nearly folded de Jesus in half.

The former St. John Bosco High wrestling standout delivered more ground and pound before referee Kevin MacDonald stopped the fight at 4:12 of the round for the first knockout loss of de Jesus’ professional career

In his postfight interview, Pico, 24, credited Jackson Wink MMA striking coach Brandon Gibson for their film study of de Jesus. Gibson told Pico when de Jesus’ corner called out “1-4,” a jab and uppercut were coming.