Cro Cop Final Fight takes place this Saturday, March 10 in Zagreb, Croatia. Headlining the card is PRIDE, UFC and K-1 star Mirko Cro Cop, who returns to K-1 rules for the first time since he destroyed Bob Sapp on April 30, 2003. Cro Cop by all means is a superstar in his native Croatia and the upcoming Final Fight event is capturing eyes nationwide. As far as the impact of the event goes, it could be a big boost for the sport in Croatia and the rest of the Balkans or it could just be a big attraction that comes and goes.
The event will be held at the Zagreb Arena, a state of the art facility that can hold up to 24 000 people. The arena is almost sold out, and without a doubt, Cro Cop is who everyone is coming to see. All the major media outlets in Croatia are covering the event daily leading up to March 10, really showcasing the true magnitude of Cro Cop's stardom.
I think one of the important parts of this card is Cro Cop's stardom possibly rubbing off on all the other fighters on the card, specifically the Croatians. Aside from Cro Cop, there are seven Croatian fighters featured and most of them are pretty solid fighters in their own right. Igor Jurkovic, Mladen Brestovac, Mladen Kujundzic, Marin Dosen, Agron Preteni, Toni Milanovic and Ivan Posavec all will be representing Croatia in front of the attention of many. Jurkovic and Brestovac are probably the best out of the fighters I listed, especially Jurkovic who is seen as one of the up and coming heavyweights to look out for, holding an impressive stoppage victory over Pavel Zhuravlev.
This is being called Cro Cop's final fight, but I'm not sure I buy that. This doesn't seem to be a one time thing, being the first event promoted by Fight Channel. They were able to recruit a ton of talent, international and national and if I'm right about this not being Cro Cop's last fight then we could possibly see more events with Cro Cop headlining. If Cro Cop retiring after this fight is the case, it could be that the event generated enough interest in the sport and some of the Croatian fighters that Fight Channel continues to hold events on the back of Croatian fighters featured on Saturday's show. Either way, this doesn't seem to me like a one and done deal.
I'm optimistic about the impact that Saturday's event can have on the sport in Croatia and surrounding areas. Cro Cop brings so much to the table as the headliner and even if the other Croatian fighters on the card can get a speck of the attention that he will, it has some good potential for the future. The event is being covered and talked about so widely that a victory and a step forward for the sport is definitely obtainable.