21 Apr 2014 14:00:05 PM
(To this day, we still cannot watch this knockout without mourning what could have been.)
Heading into his UFC debut against Eddie Sanchez at UFC 67, Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic was already considered by many to be the far and away best striker in the UFC’s heavyweight division, if not in all of MMA. His left high kick had become the thing of legend thanks to his devastating wins over Aleksander Emelianenko, Igor Vovchanchyn and Wanderlei Silva in PRIDE, to the point that it kinda-sorta became our slogan. And after he defeated Sanchez via a first round TKO set into motion by that very same kick, we figured it was only a matter of time before we saw “Mirko Cro Cop: UFC Heavyweight Champion” pasted on every UFC poster imaginable.
But as they so often do, the MMA Gods threw a wrench into our (and Mirko’s) plans at UFC 70: Nations Collide on April 21st, 2007 — seven years ago today. In a heavyweight title eliminator match that served as the evening’s main event, the Croatian special forces officer was paired against Gabriel Gonzaga, a Cro magnon-looking Brazilian who had scored three consecutive finishes (two TKO, one sub) in his first three UFC contests. Cro Cop was listed as over a 5-to-1 favorite across the board.
Any notion that the fight would be an easy win for Mirko was erased in the first round, however, as Gonzaga managed to take Filipovic down on multiple occasions and batter him with vicious elbows from on top for the majority of five minutes.
And then, it happened.Read More DIGG THIS