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Mirko 'Cro Cop': Overeem 'Owes His Excellence to Something That's Dirty'

MANCHESTER, UNITED KINGDOM - APRIL 21: A pensive Mirko Cro Cop of Croatia walks to the octagon before fighting Gabriel Gonzaga of USA in a Heavyweight bout of the Ultimate Fighting Championship at the Manchester Evening News Arena on April 21, 2007 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Gary M. Prior/Getty Images)
Gary M. Prior/Getty Images
John HeinisSenior Analyst IOctober 16, 2016

In one of the biggest upsets in recent years, Antonio "Bigfoot" Silva sent the UFC's heavyweight division into complete disarray when he knocked out Alistair Overeem at UFC 156 on Saturday. 

"The Demolition Man" was promised a showdown with UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez with a win over Silva and the former K-1 kickboxing champion seemed too intent on a title shot to worry about his Brazilian adversary. 

One former UFC heavyweight. and fellow decorated kickboxer, Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovic joins the masses putting "The Reem" on blast for his loss.

Cro Cop ripped Overeem a new one in an interview with Croatian media outlet Fight Site (translation via Bloody Elbow), first explaining why he predicted Silva to win, despite being a massive underdog.

I wasn't surprised by Silva's victory at all and I had believed he would win. I don't want to come off as a smart-ass or say I knew it all along, so I'll explain why I'd believed so. First, Silva is a big tough guy with a huge heart who had demolished Fedor and he needs no better reference than that, and Alistair hugely underestimated him and belittled him with his arrogant statements, so this mobilized Silva in the best possible way. Second, Silva is a natural heavyweight, and Alistair—for the first time since way back in 2007, when he began to gain huge weight—fought without the drugs he had used constantly for years, including testosterone and all the other shit that goes with it.

Overeem, one of the most muscular heavyweights in the sport, used to compete at middleweight up to 2005, tested the waters of light heavyweight until June 2007, before joining the heavyweight ranks for good. 

After a dominant TKO over former champion Brock Lesnar at UFC 141 in Dec. 2011, Overeem was set to fight then-champion Junior dos Santos, but lost his shot when he failed a drug test for elevated levels of testosterone. 

Overeem was then subsequently suspended by the Nevada State Athletic Commission for nine months back in March, making his fight with Silva his first matchup inside the cage in 14 months. 

The Dutchman blamed the failed drug test on prescribed medication and maintained that he had never used performance-enhancing drugs, but Cro Cop sure isn't buying that story,

Watching the weigh-in, I saw that his muscles mass was nowhere near his usual, he had the weight, but he wasn't nearly as carved out and defined, since he couldn't take anything because he was watched by the Athletic Commission. This also reflects on the psyche of a man who's been using stuff to increase his strength, endurance, pain tolerance and aggressiveness for years, and now there was none of that. Alistair is an excellent fighter, but he still owes that excellence to something that's dirty and unpermitted, and, in the end, very dangerous to health.

Cro Cop also stated that he thought Overeem "behaved so arrogantly" at the weigh-ins, he was acting like "he invented the fighting sport," before offering Silva a sincere congratulations on the victory.

Filipovic retired from MMA at the end of 2011 after suffering consecutive knockout losses to Frank Mir, Brendan Schaub and Roy Nelson inside the Octagon. 

However, he returned to kickboxing in 2012, going 3-0 under the K-1 banner last year. He also made his MMA return on New Year's Eve, picking up a rare armbar finish against an overmatched Shinichi Suzukawa.

Overeem and Cro Cop once met under the DREAM banner in Sept. 2008, though the bout was ruled a no-contest when Filipovic was hit with an inadvertent knee to the groin. 

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