As expected, the UFC has just confirmed Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic has agreed to step in and replace the injured Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira at UFC 119. Cro Cop will now headline the September 25th show with former heavyweight champ Frank Mir. So, it appears that it’s officially time to create a new event poster.
Fighters Only was the first to report on the switcheroo over the weekend, however wasn’t able to confirm what caused Big Nog to pull out of the highly anticipated rematch. It has since been reported by multiple outlets that the 34-year-old will require surgery on both of his hips and one of his knees after getting injured in practice.
There is currently no timetable for Nogueira’s return.
Cro Cro submitted Pat Barry in his last Octagon appearance at UFC 115. CC, who was once considered one of the sport’s deadliest strikers, has since recruited Barry’s services to help him get back to the land of the elites. If he’s able to post his third straight Octagon victory, it’s possible the Croatian could find himself right in the thick of the heavyweight title picture.
Mir was trounced by Shane Carwin the last time he took the stage. While he temporarily danced with the idea of dropping to the 205-pound division, he opted to remain in the class where he’s a multi-time champ. Mir has dropped two of his last three scraps, but would undoubtedly right the ship with an impressive performance against the former Pride FC legend.
Here’s a look at UFC 119’s revamped roster:
Pat Audinwood vs. Aaron Riley
Steve Lopez vs. Waylon Lowe
T.J. Grant vs. Julio Paulino
Mark Hunt vs. Sean McCorkle
(Spike TV 9PM ET/6PM PT)
Matt Mitrione vs. Joey Beltran
C.B. Dollaway vs. Joe Doerkson
Melvin Guillard vs. Jeremy Stephens
Evan Dunham and Sean Sherk
Matt Serra vs. Chris Lytle
Ryan Bader vs. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira
Frank Mir vs. Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic