Cro Cop Protege Goran Reljic Scratched from UFC 90

Kevin CurranSenior Analyst IOctober 13, 2008

It is official that due to a back injury Mirko Cro Cop's up and coming protege Goran Reljic will not be fighting at UFC 90.

Goran was a highly touted fighter with more credentials than ,ost first time UFC fighters can claim. He stepped into the octagon for the first time at UFC 84 against Wilson Gouveia. Gouveia was overwhelmed by Reljic who knocked him out in the second round. Reljic is rumored to have all of the skills of Cro Cop along with a solid ground game. That is scary!

His scheduled opponent Thales Leites is one of the top middleweight contenders in the UFC, riding a four fight win streak that includes a controversial win over Nate Marquardt. If Goran was to beat Thales he may have been only one more win away from a match with champion Anderson Silva, who is quickly running out of opponents.

Anyone who has seen Reljic would definitely pay to see him fight Silva. His crisp kicks and quick hands would give Silva a tough challenge, one which he has not seen in some time. As a side note, Reljic should fight Chonan for the number one contendership. This would make a great headline either way. Either Silva tries to avenge his last loss or he faces one of the toughest matchups of his career.

The UFC has yet to find an acceptable opponent for Leites and the bout may be scratched all together. It is tough to tell what will be next for Reljic, but I know I'm looking forward to seeing him in the UFC again.