INDIANAPOLIS - SEPTEMBER 25: Mirko Cro Cop reacts after being knocked out by Frank Mir during their UFC heavyweight bout at Conseco Fieldhouse on September 25 2010 in Indianapolis Indiana. (Photo by Al Bello/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Now might be a good time to pick up stock in Actavis UK Ltd.
That's because former PRIDE and Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) heavyweight striker Mirko Filipovic is contemplating a return to mixed martial arts (MMA), despite being violently knocked out in three consecutive fights prior to his 2011 retirement.
In fact, he's ready to prove he can still compete, even if it kills him.
That's according to a conversation he had with USA Today, explaining how fight fans don't understand that martial arts "is his life." Replay the Rocky-Adrian conversation in Rocky IV (using your best Croatian accent) and you probably have an idea of how this thing plays out.
"Cro Cop's" comments, after the jump.
"Concerning my retirement from the UFC, I said it was my last fight for the UFC and last fight on the present contract, but I did not say, 'I won't keep fighting,' I never said that. I think the best thing to say is that I was born to fight. If you ask me, when I look deep into my soul, of course I would like to fight MMA again. People don't get it. Martial arts is my life. My motivation now is to prove to everyone that I'm still capable of being in the cage. I'm not old. I'm 37, but I can do things that fighters 10 years younger cannot. I will prove that, or I will die trying."
Filipovic is 37 years old, which coincidentally, is how many MMA bouts he has to his record. That doesn't account for his countless kickboxing contests, including what was supposed to be his "farewell fight" against Ray Sefo back in March of this year.
There's a lot of miles on those tires.
The former Croatian cop has also been plagued with injuries and inconsistencies following his UFC debut back in 2007, winning just three of his last seven fights and incurring a total of four knockouts, dating back to his head kick loss to Gabriel Gonzaga across the pond.
While it's unlikely he'll return to stateside competition, Cro Cop should have no problem securing a fight on the European circuit, if he so chooses. But the question remains, who will tune in if he does?
Anyone out there still think he can hang?