#6-Aaron Pico (9-3) defeated #8-Justin Gonzales (12-1) via unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 30-26) at Bellator 271.
via MMA Junkie:
From the opening bell, the two men slung leather. The first punch of the fight was from Gonzales, and it set the tone. It glanced off the noggin of Pico, who took it and moved forward. In Round 1, both striking and wrestling were on display. The most damage was done by Pico, who landed a pair of violent body punches and a hook that stunned Gonzales. He also scored a takedown to close out the round.
A different tone was set in Round 2 when Pico scored a takedown in the opening minute. It took Gonzales over 90 seconds to get back to his feet. A few punches later, Gonzales was taken down again. Pico mounted Gonzales but ran out of time.
The third round saw more dominant wrestling from Pico, who controlled Gonzales on the canvas. In the final minute, Gonzales rose to his feet and went for broke. He was met by another violent Pico body punch and was unable to muster up much offense before the final buzzer sounded.
With the victory, Pico extends his unbeaten streak to five. It also includes wins over Aiden Lee, John de Jesus, Solo Hatley Jr., and Daniel Carey. Over the span of his 12-fight professional MMA career, Pico has registered six knockouts or TKOs and two submissions.
Pico released the following statements after his win:
“I knew going into the fight that he (Justin Gonzales) was going to be a tough fighter. He is a former wrestler. One thing about us wrestlers is we don’t quit. All my coaches knew he was going to be tough.”
“He was just holding on to me and is really strong. When people hold on to you, it’s kind of hard to get strikes.”
“Thank God I walked out of here relatively healthy. I’m just happy I got my full paycheck.”
“It is the first time I’ve gone three rounds. It’s my first decision. I need the experience. I’m happy I got the win.”
“I knew I was the dominant performer, but I have to get better. I am just so hard on myself. I want to finish guys.”
“Let’s go back to the drawing board. Once I step out of this cage, it’s going to be a whole different ballgame. I have to get prepared for the next
(PHOTO CREDIT: LUCAS NOONAN/BELLATOR MMA)