It’s recently been revealed that ufc knockout artist Shane Carwin has opted out of his fight with Roy Nelson at UFC 125 due to back problems that may or may not require corrective surgery, and that the UFC is still scrambling to find him a replacement opponent. This would have been Shane Carwin’s first fight after being linked to a nationwide steroids conspiracy. While the hunt for a replacement continues, one man has already voluntarily stepped up and asked to replace the heavy-handed striker. And he’s one of the most famous strikers in all of Mixed Martial Arts: Mirko Filipovic.
Speaking with Fighters Only, here’s what Mirko Cro Cop had to say on the situation: “I know nothing about it, this is the first I heard of it. But it would be an interesting fight for sure. I think Roy’s style matches very well with mine, we could have a good fight. I didn’t hear anything from the UFC yet, but let’s see if they call me.”
Both men have lost one and won one in their most-recent fights. Roy Nelson recently became the only man to ever survive all three rounds against Junior dos Santos, losing to the heavy-handed and heavily-feared striker via Unanimous Decision. Mirko Filipovic was last seen eating a late-round and fight-ending knee by former champion Frank Mir in a fight that some have called one of the worst UFC main events in recent history.
Now, if you’ll recall, I was one of the most adamant nay-sayers when it came to Cro Cop vs. Mir. I’ve been saying for quite a while now that Cro Cop is not relevant and will never be relevant in the UFC. And despite the negativity I know it’s going to inspire, I still firmly believe that, and that’s why I don’t want to see this fight happen.
Mirko Cro Cop does not deserve another top-card fight against another top-level UFC star. Roy Nelson has to endure an incredible amount of mud-slinging due to his unusual physique, but at the end of the day, the man is a great fighter and deserves his spot at or near the top of the card. Mirko Cro Cop hasn’t done anything lately to make me believe that he should get one last “last chance”.
In regards to who I think should face Roy Nelson, I honestly think Frank Mir would be a great choice, or perhaps a rematch with Brendan Schaub. I think both fights would be very entertaining for several different reasons: Mir vs. Nelson would be an incredibly competitive ground war, while Nelson vs. Schaub would be an epic stand-up battle especially when you consider how much of a tear Schaub has been on since losing to Nelson.
So while I’m willing to admit that a Cro Cop vs. Nelson fight does have potential, ultimately I’m siding against this one. If Mirko Cro Cop is given one last “last chance”, it needs to be lower on the cards and against someone who’s an up-and-comer looking to make a name for himself. It may seem harsh, but being a gatekeeper is the only viable option Cro Cop has left if he wants to remain in the UFC.
But what do you think, fans and friends? How interested would you be if Shane Carwin vs. Roy Nelson became Mirko Cro Cop vs. Roy Nelson?