Mirko Filipovic CroCop wants to continue his career fighting for Japanese Promotion Rizin. For this to happen he had to ask the UFC to be let out of his contract. He is currently suspended for 2 years following volunteering information that he had used growth hormone (HGH) to treat his shoulder injury. Following USADA procedure he was then suspended for 2 years.
#Repost @nobu_sakakibara ・・・ ミルコ・クロコップは言いました。日本にもう一度、皆を熱狂させる真の闘いの舞台を復活させる為、帰ってきたと！ グランプリの一回戦から果敢に立ち向かう彼の潔さと覚悟を、脳裏に焼きつけて下さい！ #rizinff Mirko Crocop said “I am back to make the Japanese fans excited about fights once again”. Come witness the dedication of a true pioneer of the sport participating in the GP from the opening round! Цитата Мирко. “Я вернулся в Японию, чтобы еше раз возродить непередаваемый накал и азарт как на ринге, так и в зале!” Будьте готовы, в 1 раунде Гран При Мирко продемонстрирует настоящую храбрость и решимость бойца!
CroCop will compete in the Rizin tournament along with Wanderlei Silva, who is still serving a suspension for evading a drug test back in 2014.
CroCop is nearing his retirement – he expects Rizin to be his last competition. Here’s what he told local Croatian media RTL:
The end of your career is forced by USADA besides injury. Have you found a way to deal with it?
“This whole story was very incorrect. True, they fight for keeping the sports clean, which I support but I don’t think they were correct. I’ll tell you right now what exactly happened, and I haven’t told that to anyone yet.
Firstly, there was no doping. I was tested 5 or 6 times. I’ve never used any kind of doping nor do I consider there’s a need for it. Doping in a fight sports does not reflect the same way as it does in other sports…
How did it come to my injury? I made a mistake. When I was preparing I was doing push ups, pull ups.. But some specific things I couldn’t do due to injury. For example, I couldn’t wrestle. That was slowly healing when UFC offered me to fight in the end of July which I had to decline. After that I accepted the fight scheduled for November so the preparation was intense. I kept putting off the begining of finishing touches because of my leg recovery.
Then the intense wrestling started. Joso Matkovic came, he’s a 150 kg wrestler and his goal was to take me down. I pulled a hand under his shoulder so he would hang all his weight on my arm. We wrestled, I lifeted him, turned and after a couple of weeks it just snapped. The muscle was overworked and it cracked.
Doctor told me to stop training, so I minimized them. This is why I took HGH which USADA rules forbid. Therapy lasted 11 days, medical dosahe. It didn’t help me at all because I haven’t stopped training. In a bad turn of events, they came from Switzerland to check my blood for doping. I have blood and urine, said what I was using. I knew it was banned. It’s a medicine it has nothing to do with doping – it doesn’t improve performance, it improves healing.
I emailed the UFC and admitted what happened. Told them I should’ve asked for permission to use HGH for healing. But I didn’t. They told me there won’t be any problems.
I was naive, there came a call from the USADA, they told me my admission is worthy and admirable. I didn’t get it. My email was forwarded to USADA and they used it as an admission. They gave me 2 years of suspension because they needed a big name to show they’re in control.
In the end they offered to cut my suspension if I ratted on a fighter. I couldn’t believe they wanted to humiliate me in a such a way through the end.
USADA was right in a sense that I took HGH without asking, but it had nothing to do with doping. At that point I hired an American lawyer who found out that the time for appeal had just expired. ”
Mirko will be fighting in the same promotion as Gabi Garcia.
Rizin tournament will be built around a 16-man tournament, which starts on Sept. 25 at the Saitama Super Arena. It continues with the quarterfinals on Dec. 29, and the semifinals and finals on New Year’s Eve. Cro Cop and Silva will get first-round bye, so they’re expected to start their journey December 29th in quarterfinals.