(photo courtesy Josh Hedges/Zuffa)
Igor Pokrajac’s debut with the Ultimate Fighting Championship did not exactly turn out the way he had hoped. The Croatian dropped a unanimous decision to Vladimir Matyushenko at UFC 103 last September, which ended the dominant eight fight win streak he began in Dec. of 2007.
Pokrajac now looks to rebound from the disappointing loss when he takes on James Te-Huna this Saturday, Feb. 21 at UFC 110 in Sydney, Australia.
The member of Cro Cop Squad Gym’s road to the most notable promotion in mixed martial arts began in Feb. of 2003, appropriately with a technical knockout victory. Ever since his debut in the sport, Pokrajac has made a career out of finishing fights, either by way of submission or knockout.
While Pokrajac’s biggest strength and greatest experience lie in his wrestling and submission game, training with Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic, the man he considers his hero, it’s no wonder his striking has become a devastating asset in the cage.
Pokrajac and Filipovic’s history goes back to 2003 when the Croatians trained together in order to prepare “Cro Cop” for his bout with Kazuyuki Fujita. They have been training partners ever since, and Pokrajac has certainly reaped the benefits.
Since going 7-3 in his first 10 professional fights, Pokrajac has improved his record to 21-6, losing only once since 2008. While on his eight fight win streak, which spanned from Dec. of 2007 to April of 2009, he went to the judges’ decision only one time.
The most notable accomplishment Pokrajac has seen thus far in his career is his dominant performances throughout the Croatian based Durata World Grand Prix 1. He finished all three of the fights in the competition via first round stoppage.
Pokrajac has made a name for himself in Croatia, but his poor debut in America was not exactly what he was looking for. The Croatian will get a chance to put the abysmal decision loss in the past when he takes on Te-Huna. With a dominant performance this coming Saturday, perhaps the fans of mixed martial arts will truly be introduced to Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic’s apprentice.