Following his loss to Roy Nelson at UFC 137, Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipović announced his retirement from the world of professional Mixed Martial Arts. One of the greatest heavyweight fighters of all time, Cro Cop is a living legend in the MMA world.
Probably the most successful kickboxer ever to cross over into MMA, Cro Cop was once considered one of the top 3 heavyweight fighters in the world, alongside fellow PRIDE veterans Fedor Emelianenko and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. His run in the Japanese promotion was legendary, as was his fearsome left high kick, which he utilised to leave more than a few of his opponents wondering what the hell had happened.
Although he has lost some of that fearsome aura as years have gone on and his body has slowed down, he has still remained competitive against some of the very best fighters in the world. Instead of the Mirko Cro Cop that we have recently seen competing in the UFC, I personally choose to remember the Cro Cop that KO’d fighters like Igor Vovchanchyn, Alexander Emelianenko, and Wanderlei Silva. More than just an outstanding warrior, Mirko Filipovic will go down in the annuls of MMA history as one of the most well respected fighters of all time. After all, how many fighters can you think of that have managed to juggle professional fighting and a career as a member of parliament? And obviously there is also his previous career as an elite level anti-terrorist commando in the Lučko police force.
Rather than list all of his accomplishments, I’ll let his highlight reel do the talking. Goodbye Mirko, you will be missed