On Sunday, heavyweight legend Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic dropped a serious hint that he’d signed with Bellator MMA. On Monday morning, the promotion made it official with a press release.
Cro Cop is set to make his Bellator debut opposite fellow UFC veteran and knockout artist Roy Nelson. The pair will collide at the landmark Bellator 200, which goes down on May 25, in London, England.
Though Cro Cop has recently been talked about like a fighter on a downslide, he’s actually riding an impressive eight-fight win streak over some decent opposition. After two wins over Satoshi Ishii, he briefly returned to the UFC, where he avenged the worse loss of his career by stopping Gabriel Gonzaga with third-round elbows. From there, the heavyweight legend left the UFC, picking up wins over Hyun Man Myung, “King Mo”, “Baruto,” Amir Aliakbari and Tsuyoshi Kohsaka in the Rizin ring. He is currently 36–11–2 overall.
Nelson, meanwhile, sits at 23-15 overall. He’s a tough 4-6 in his last 10 bouts, having bested Antônio Rodrigo Nogueira, Jared Rosholt, Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva and Javy Ayala, and come up short opposite Mark Hunt, Alistair Overeem, Josh Barnett, Derrick Lewis, Alexander Volkov, and most recently, Matt Mitrione.
Here’s the Bellator 200 lineup as it currently stands:
Bellator 200 Fight Card:
- Middleweight World Title Bout: Rafael Carvalho (15-1) vs. Gegard Mousasi (43-6-2)
- Heavyweight Main Card Bout: Mirko Cro Cop (36-11-2, 1 NC) vs. Roy Nelson (23-15)
- Light Heavyweight Main Card Bout: Phil Davis (18-4) vs. Linton Vassell (18-6)
- Welterweight Main Card Bout: Michael Page (12-0) vs. David Rickels (19-4, 2 NC)
While this card is looking more and more like much watch television, it’s worth noting that, like all of Bellator’s overseas events, it will air on tape delay.
Will you be watching Mirko Cro Cop make his anticipated Bellator debut opposite Roy Nelson at Bellator 200? Join the conversation in the comments section!
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 3/4/2018.