Mirko Cro Cop will not be competing at Bellator 200.
This Friday night (May 25), Bellator 200 takes place inside the SSE Arena, Wembley in London, England. The main event was supposed to be a Bellator Heavyweight Grand Prix alternate battle between Cro Cop and Roy Nelson. That isn’t going to happen.
Gareth A. Davies reports that Cro Cop has been pulled from Bellator 200 due to an injury:
Breaking exclusive…. Mirko Cro Cop forced out of @BellatorMMA #Bellator200 headline event with @roynelsonmma through injury at London @ssearena event on Friday … story to follow via @TelegraphSport shortly
— Gareth A Davies (@GarethADaviesDT) May 21, 2018
This was going to be Cro Cop’s Bellator debut. The Pride FC and Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) veteran is riding an eight-fight winning streak and had hoped to even the score against Nelson. While Cro Cop was said to have an “undisclosed injury,” The Daily Telegraph notes that he’s believed to have issues with his leg.
Bellator is currently searching for Nelson’s replacement opponent. As it stands now, the middleweight title bout between champion Rafael Carvalho and Gegard Mousasi is the new Bellator 200 main event. The promotion’s Senior Director of Communications & Athlete Strategy, Ryan Grab, had the following to say:
“Mirko Cro Cop has suffered an undisclosed injury and has been forced off the card, and we are looking at replacements, though for the time being Carvalho-Mousasi has been moved to the main event and British standout Michael ‘Venom’ Page against American David Rickels has been elevated up to the co-main event fight.”
Bellator 200 will also feature a light heavyweight tilt between former 205-pound title holder Phil Davis and Linton Vassell. A catchweight bout between Aaron Chalmers and Ash Griffiths will also be featured on the main card. If a replacement opponent for Nelson can’t be found and Bellator wants to stick with five bouts on the main card, they have options such as promoting Anastasia Yankova vs. Kate Jackson from the prelims.
How significant do you think Mirko Cro Cop’s absence is for the Bellator 200 card?