Mirko Cro Cop
43-Year-Old Bellator Heavyweight 31-11-2, 1NC
May 21, 2018 Mirko Cro Cop News
RotoWire Fantasy Analysis
Cro Cop has withdrawn from his headline fight with Roy Nelson for Friday's Bellator 200 in London due to an undisclosed leg injury, Gareth A. Davies of The Telegraph reports.
With the Croatian fighter's Bellator debut now delayed by the injury, it's expected that the middleweight title fight between Rafael Carvalho and Gegard Mousasi will now replace Cro Cop-Nelson as the main event. Meanwhile, the promotion is still searching for a replacement fighter to match up against Nelson for the card. The severity of Cro Cop's injury still isn't known, so it remains difficult to forecast when he'll be ready to return to the cage.
Mirko Cro Cop: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
Fantasy AnalysisCro Cop plans to undergo surgery to address swelling in his knee, but did leave the door open for a "farewell bout" if the 42-year-old manages to make a full recovery. The former UFC heavyweight recently fought three times in two days to cap off his victory in the Japan-based tournament, with each of his four victories in that four victories in that event coming via stoppage. Although his legacy may be tainted by a USADA violation that led to him parting ways with the UFC, there's no questioning his place in MMA history. He fought professionally 49 times since starting his career in 2001, finishing with a 35-11-2 record (1 NC).
Fantasy AnalysisCro Cop got past Hyun Man Myung via submission (arm-triangle choke) in the opening round, and his victory over "King Mo" will punch his ticket to the semifinals, where Baruto Kaito awaits. Lawal is quite possibly his most impressive victory in the last five years, as he is a top light heavyweight contender under the Bellator banner. The 42-year-old Croatian's success overseas doesn't necessarily mean he'll be heading to the states anytime soon, as he was released from his UFC contract in last July, eight months after a reported USADA violation.
Fantasy AnalysisCro Cop defeated Hyn Man Myung in his first bout of the tournament, while Silva was granted a bye. Each fighter likely has their best days of fighting well behind them, but the names are big enough for a meaningful draw at the event scheduled in Saitama, Japan.
Fantasy AnalysisCro Cop was suspended two years by the USDA for voluntarily informing them that he had used growth hormone to treat a shoulder injury. He retired from MMA last Novermber, but wanted to continue fighting, so he'll fight under Rizin for the meantime. Cro Cop isn't eligible to return to the octagon until November 8, 2017.
Fantasy AnalysisCro Cop announced his retirement from MMA earlier in the month, so this wasn't going to affect any upcoming fights. He had been scheduled to square off against Anthony Hamilton, but had to drop out due to a shoulder injury. If he ever does reconsider retirement, the 41-year-old will have to serve a suspension first, which at this stage appears unlikely.
Fantasy AnalysisCro Cop did everything he could to repair his shoulder injury, but at 41-years old, it just wasn't happening. The popular Cro Cop returned to the UFC in April after three-plus years away from the company and knocked out Gabriel Gonzaga in a Fight of the Night performance in Krakow, Poland. The former PRIDE Grand Prix Champion will go down as one of the most decorated heavyweights in the history of MMA.
Fantasy AnalysisCro Cop returned to the UFC in April for the first time in four-plus years and he picked up a third round TKO win over Gabriel Gonzaga. It was quite a return for the 40-year-old heavyweight legend. He will look to put together back-to-back wins against Hamilton.