MMA fighting

Aaron Pico vs. Jeremy Kennedy in preparation for Bellator 277; three more fights

Aaron Pico is set to return to the Bellator cage in April against, arguably, his toughest test yet.

Several people with knowledge of the promotion’s plans have confirmed to MMA Fighting that a bout between Pico and Jeremy Kennedy is in the works for Bellator 277. The event will take place April 15 at the SAP Center in San Jose, Calif. MMA Journalist Marcel Dorf was the first to report the booking.

After being stopped in back-to-back fights by Henry Corrales and Adam Borics, Pico has won five straight. The 25-year-old has earned vicious knockouts from Daniel Carey and John De Jesus, as well as submission victories over Solo Hatley Jr. and Aiden Lee. In his last appearance, Pico handed former LFA featherweight champion Justin Gonzales his first loss with a dominant unanimous decision at Bellator 271 in November.

Kennedy, a UFC, Brave CF and PFL veteran, will compete for the fourth time under the Bellator banner. The 29-year-old beat Matt Bessette in his promotional debut before suffering a decision loss to Borics at Bellator 256. Kennedy bounced back with a huge win over former title challenger Emmanuel Sanchez at Bellator 272.

A promotion executive also confirmed to MMA Fighting on Thursday a trio of new pay-per-view bouts. Theo Haig will meet Alan Benson in a middleweight bout, Edwin De Los Santos and Alberto Mendez will square off in a flyweight contest, while Bobby Seronio III will face Caleb Ramirez in the bantamweight division. The 135-pound bout was first reported by MMA enthusiast.

Bellator 277 will be headlined by a featherweight title rematch between AJ McKee and Patricio Pitbull, while Vadim Nemkov will defend his light heavyweight title against Corey Anderson in the light heavyweight grand prix final in the co- main event.

Damon Martin contributed to this report.