Adli Edwards wants everyone to know he isn’t a pushover.
Edwards is set to face Aaron Pico on the main card of Bellator 277 just two weeks after his last win at XMMA 4. He figured after the win, he would earn a shot in one of the bigger promotions but it came a lot sooner than he thought as he inked a multi-fight deal with Bellator to face Pico on Friday night at a 150lbs catchweight fight.
“I thought there was a good chance that the last win would get me in one of these big promotions, but I thought that for the last couple of wins. I thought maybe Contender Series but you never know and it comes down to the right opportunity and this is definitely that,” Edwards said to MyMMANews. “This came as a surprise but one that I am happy with, I also got a multi-fight deal, you will be seeing me around Bellator for a while. My plan is to climb up these rankings and make some moves. It’s perfect for me, I’m not here to do just one fight, Bellator is a great organization with great fighters and I look forward to testing myself against them.”
Edwards knows Pico is hyped up and many expect the 25-year-old to walk through him. However, Edwards is confident he will surprise a lot of people and prove to everyone he is as good as he says he is.
“He’s definitely hyped up so I’m very grateful he took the fight. I’m sure there were a lot of other potential guys or he could’ve said no as it is last minute for him too,” Edwards explained. “I’m happy we are in there but at the end of the day, I’m coming to beat him, no disrespect to him but I’m not a walk-over for him. I know people are writing me off but I do think I will surprise a lot of people.”
In the fight, Adli Edwards knows it will be tough as he is well aware of Aaron Pico’s KO power and his wrestling ability.
Yet, he believes if he can stuff some takedowns he will frustrate Pico. If he can do that, Edwards thinks he can draw Pico into a fire fight and find that KO shot as he knows he has the power to shut Pico’s lights off.
“I plan on testing his chin and finding out if he’s still there to be knocked out. I do think it will be a really fun fight, he’s the best wrestler I’ve fought, I’m the best wrestler he’s fought, and we both are good strikers,” Edwards said. “I think it will have some wrestling, and striking, it will just be an MMA fight. We will see a lot of things happen in this one, but there are ways I know I can win and I think I can get the KO but I’m planning for a war.”
Should Adli Edwards get his hand raised he would become a top-five featherweight in Bellator. He also says that would cement the fact that everything he sacrificed was well worth it.
“It does a lot for me and will open a lot of doors for me. It will allow me to commit full-time to train and show I am one of the best fighters, this is a pivotal moment in my career,” Edwards concluded.
Cole Shelton covers MMA for BJPenn.com, MMANews, and MyMMANews.com while also being the lead MMA odds writer for Sports Betting Dime