UFC 119 is just around the corner, and today main event fighters Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic and Frank Mir will sat down with the media to discuss their upcoming heavyweight clash. Check out the recap of today’s call.
1:05: Mir says his opinion of Cro Cop is the same now as it always has been. He believes that his striking is very dangerous, but is not very concerned with his submission game. Also includes that Mirko would prefer to keep the fight standing.
1:07: Mir is then asked about where he would be most comfortable. Mir says he is comfortable anywhere the fight may go.
1:09: Filipovic says that he doesn’t want short preparation to be an excuse. He also claims that he is completely prepared.
1:10: Mir is asked about his increase in size. The former champion says that he is continuing to do the same things he has been doing and is anywhere between 250 and 255 pounds.
1:11: The UFC is traveling to Indiana and will be experiencing a new market, to which Mir says he is honored to be a part of. Cro Cop addresses how this is the first main event he has been in for the UFC, saying that he is excited for the opportunity.
1:12: Brock Lesnar is inevitably brought up, and Mir says the difference between this fight and the Lesnar fights is that he will be able to fight on the feet without worrying about the takedown very much.
1:13: Cro Cop is then asked about fighting against an opponent with a solid jiu-jitsu game. He says that he is not on the same level as Mir, but he has experience in the grappling aspect as well. However, he says he prefers to avoid the ground game.
1:15: Mir is then asked about whether or not he is underestimating Filipovic’s grappling abilities. Mir quickly explains how he is in no way underestimating Cro Cop and says he will be very difficult to submit.
1:17: The former UFC champion then is asked about how confident he is in his stand up after knocking out Cheick Kongo, then being knocked out by Shane Carwin. He says that the way Carwin knocked him out was somewhat like ground and pound, explaining that clinch against the cage is not the same as striking in the center of the cage.
1:19: Cro Cop says that he will fight as long as he will, but understands that any injury could severely hinder his ability to compete in the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
1:21: Cro Cop is then asked about fighting in the U.S.A., stating that it is definitely different than fighting overseas. However, he says he likes fighting in both Japan and the United States.
1:24: Mir says that once the cage door shuts, anything he said before the fight goes away. He says regardless of anything he says, his opponent is going to try to hurt him. It’s just the way of the sport. He also says he likes Cro Cop on a personal level, but that will not stop him from attempting to defeat him in dominant fashion.
1:26: Mir then explains how he has become much more of a vegetarian, but says that he is pretty much the same guy he has been for years. But he does explain how he has found out how important wrestling has become and is working on improving his wrestling game.
1:29: Cro Cop is asked about his help, saying that it was “good until today”. He explains that talking to long on a mobile phone can cause brain cancer. His humor continues to become more and more apparent, which only bolsters his likability.
1:30: Cro Cop says, jokingly, that the fight will begin with him going in for a double-leg takedown to take Mir to the ground. Once again, you can’t help but love Filipovic’s humorous side.
1:31: Mir asked about his training partners and says that he has been working with Gilbert Yvel and Mike Whitehead. Also says that he has realized how well Filipovic utilizes underhooks.
1:33: Mir asked about how training for title fights helps him in terms of conditioning. He says that it helps, but that his mentality is very different when he is fighting 25 minutes, as opposed to a 15 minutes fight. He says that he comes out of the gate much faster in a three round contest.
1:34: Mir then states that a victory over Cro Cop will be a high profile win, but he realizes he has a lot of competition to climb back to a title shot.
1:35: Mir is asked about who he is picking in Lesnar vs. Velasquez, saying that he is not betting against the champion any more after the Carwin onslaught he survived. He also says that he was very impressed with Lesnar’s ability to recover and defeat Carwin at UFC 116.
1:37: Cro Cop says that he was asked by the UFC to take the fight and says that he felt a responsibility to take the fight. He also says that he didn’t want to disappoint the fans of the UFC and that they gave him an offer that he could not refuse.
1:39: Filipovic asked about how he feels going into this fight, simply stating, “I feel good.”
1:40: Cro Cop asked about the adjustments to fighting in a cage. He says there are many differences, but feels that he has made the necessary adjustments to succeed inside a cage.
1:41: Immediately following the question, Mir is asked about the possibility for another division between light heavyweight and heavyweight. Mir feels that there are just not enough top fighters to make that happen.
1:42: Filipovic asked again about taking this fight on short notice and clearly says that he does not want it to be used as an excuse. He says that both he and Mir will be fully prepared come fight night.
1:44: Mir asked about fighting a guy like Cro Cop, who was so successful in PRIDE. He credits Cro Cop with his success in PRIDE and is happy that he has an opportunity to step into the cage with him. He is looking forward to competing with one of the sports’ greats.
1:46: Mir then asked about the Nogueira match up, explaining that it is a lose-lose match up. He feels that even if he came out and beat him dominantly, if it was not as dominant as the first time, people will say he is slipping.
1:47: The final question is related to long-term goals, and Mir is asked about moving to light heavyweight. He says he is extremely intrigued by the thought of dropping to the 205-pound mark, but he says the human body can only handle so much.
1:48: One more question gets slipped in before the call ends, and the two are asked about the winner potentially fighting Randy Couture. Mir says he would not relish the idea because of the respect he has for Couture. Cro Cop says that he prefers to concentrate on the upcoming fight and not on a bout with the UFC Hall of Famer.
1:49: And one last question is still asked, to which Cro Cop explains that he brought in Dean Lister to help prepare for Mir’s jiu-jitsu prowess.
1:51: The call comes to a close after roughly 45 minutes. Not necessarily as exciting as yesterday’s call between Georges St. Pierre and Josh Koscheck, but Cro Cop’s humor provided some nice entertainment.