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Matchmaker Mirko

If there’s one thing Mirko Crocop has learned during his most recent contractual stint in the UFC, it’s that the squeaky wheel gets the grease. He stole Joe Rogan’s mic at UFC 115 to ask for a submission of the night bonus and got it. Now he’s asking for ‘inspiration’ to keep him from retiring in the form of specific opponents. From an interview with Fighters Only:

“I have 35 in MMA and 26 in K-1 and then 44 amateur boxing matches before that – I have had three times more fights than Randy. So of course I am not old in years, but believe me, I have been around!” Filipovic added.

“I have been to Japan 44 times. That is 44 times I got out of bed, went to the airport and travelled all the way to Japan, fought once, twice in a night. 44 times I went to Japan, suffered jetlag, no sleep, broken bones, stitches – at some point you become sick of everything. So I am still thinking about what to do and right now I need some rest. I will talk with Lorenzo and we will see. I just need motivation right now.”

Asked what kind of thing would constitute motivation, Filipovic had a long think before answering.

“I think it means fights with the legends… Randy Couture, Antonio Nogueira and [Gabriel] Gonzaga – definitely Gonzaga. I would like to fight them in that order actually – Couture, Nogueira, Gonzaga. Those are the kind of fights that would inspire me and make me go through eight weeks of hell with Hippolyte again.”

Mirko Crocop vs Couture / Nog / Gonzaga II sounds a hell of a lot better than fights against Al-Turk, Perosh, and Pat Barry. Honestly, the UFC hasn’t exactly done the best job of booking him, either putting him against cans or nextgen killers instead of booking … oh, I dunno … fights against other popular heavyweights that fans actually want to see?

Normally I might be against a fighter trying to matchmake himself, but Crocop does a good job this time. It’s not like any of his requests have other fights lined up that the world is clamoring to see. Gabriel Gonzaga just got murdered by the same guy who stole Mirko’s soul. Randy Couture is in novelty fight mode, so this is right up his alley. And Big Nog just requested Mirko for his next fight. So come on, UFC. Give Mirko what he wants, give us what we want, and let him finish his career with some fights that don’t suck.