42-year-old Mirko Cro Cop if retiring from MMA after 16 years in the sport, as he reportedly has injury problems that have led to the decision. Mirko (23-8, 12 KOs) specifically has a knee problem that needs surgery. It’s unclear if Mirko Cro Cop will fight once more as a going away present to his many MMA fans.
Mirko has done well as of late with seven consecutive wins. He fought three times in December alone at the Rizin World Grand Prix in Japan. 2016 was a busy year for Mirko with him fighting four times in total. It’s unknown when Mirko suffered a knee injury. As active as he’s been, it’s not all that surprising that he’s now hobbled by injury issues to the knee.
Cro Cop said this to mmafighting.com about his decision to retire:
“There will always be a fire inside of me,” Cro Cop said. “But there is a time where you have to say enough.”
In Crop Cop’s four fights in 2016, he beat Muhammed Lawal, Amir Aliakbari, Baruto Kaito, and Hyun Man Myung. Those guys are obviously a mixed bag in terms of talent level. We’re not talking about the same kind of talent level as some of the guys in the UFC, are we?
“There are so many champions in the combat sports — in MMA, in kickboxing, in boxing — who just didn’t know when to stop,” Cro Cop said. “There is always younger and stronger fighters that are coming and coming and coming. I think it’s priceless to leave the sport as a winner. With a belt. I think it’s priceless.”
Well, hopefully for Cro Cop, he goes out with a victory if he chooses to fight again as a farewell fight in Japan or wherever. With Cro Cop’s knee injury, he might not be mobile enough to beat one of the younger competitors unless it’s someone really beatable.
Cro Cop will be having surgery this month. The idea is for him come back from his surgery and go into training for another fight. Coming back from knee surgery is no piece of cake. If Cro Cop has never dealt with knee surgery before, he might be in for a rude awakening, because it’s not easy coming back from it.
Cro Cop has wins in the past over well-known MMA fighters like Josh Barnett, Mark Coleman, Wanderlei Silva, and Alexander Emelianenko.