This Month’s MMA Birthdays: Mirko ‘Cro Cop’ Filipovic Turns 43

By Brian Knapp Sep 5, 2017

He was one of MMA’s original boogeymen and a pillar of the Pride Fighting Championships promotion in Japan. Mirko Filipovic will celebrate his 43rd birthday on Sept. 10.

Filipovic debuted in 2001 and soon after rose to prominence in Pride, where his signature left high kick made him a permanent fixture on highlight reels. During his stay in the Japanese organization, “Cro Cop” twice fought for the heavyweight title, won the 2006 Pride open weight grand prix and subdued a long line of contemporaries: Josh Barnett (three times), Wanderlei Silva, Kazushi Sakuraba, Igor Vovchanchyn, Mark Coleman, Kevin Randleman and Hidehiko Yoshida. Filipovic’s famed August 2005 battle with Fedor Emelianenko -- he lost by unanimous decision -- was easily the most anticipated heavyweight fight in mixed martial arts history.

“Cro Cop” brought his talents to the Ultimate Fighting Championship in 2007 but never lived up to the hype that preceded his arrival. He has enjoyed a resurgence over the last three years and finds himself on a late-career tear that has seen him stop seven consecutive opponents. Filipovic won the 2016 Rizin Fighting Federation open weight grand prix in December, rattling off wins over Muhammed Lawal, Kaido Hoovelson and Amir Aliakbari in a three-day period.

Those in MMA celebrating a birthday during the month of September:

SEPT. 1

Tim Kennedy, 38
Mike Pierce, 37
Nick Catone, 36
D.J. Linderman, 34
Henrique da Silva, 28
Carl Seumanutafa, 28

SEPT. 2

Steve Gable, 41
Jeff Curran, 40
Shamil Abdurakhimov, 36
Alessio Sakara, 36
Sean O’Connell, 34
Anthony Durnell, 33
Dragan Tesanovic, 32
Jamil Silveira da Conceicao, 31
Enrique Marin, 31
Cathal Pendred, 30
Alejandro Perez, 28

SEPT. 3

Hidehiko Yoshida, 48
Leo Sylvest, 44
Daniel Jolly, 33
Dominick Cruz, 32
Lorenz Larkin, 31

SEPT. 4

Bao Quach, 38
Katy Collins, 30
Kevin Lee, 25
Humberto Bandenay, 23

SEPT. 5

Emmanuel Yarborough (1960-2015)
James Brasco, 45
Gray Maynard, 38
Jacob Volkmann, 37
Tim Hague, 34
Francis Ngannou, 31
Raquel Pennington, 29

SEPT. 6

Thales Leites, 36
Tarec Saffiedine, 31
Jared Gordon, 28

SEPT. 7

Patrick Williams, 36
Alan Carlos, 34
Ian Loveland, 34
Pedro Munhoz, 31
Yancy Medeiros, 30
Larissa Pacheco, 23

SEPT. 8

Rubens Xavier, 43
Mike Thomas Brown, 42
Chris Tuchscherer, 42
Yasuhiro Urushitani, 41
Chris Dempsey, 30
Maryna Moroz, 26

SEPT. 9

Don Richards, 43
Roger Narvaez, 34
Harris Sarmiento, 34
Jose Aldo, 31
Bobby Green, 31
Kyung Ho Kang, 30

SEPT. 10

Masahiko Kimura (1917-1993)
Sanae Kikuta, 46
Mirko Filipovic, 43
Joe Doerksen, 40
Naoya Uematsu, 39

SEPT. 11

Chance Farrar, 42
Eric Bedard, 33
Cody Gibson, 30

SEPT. 12

Yuki Sasaki, 41
James Irvin, 39
Ray Steinbeiss, 38
Stanislav Nedkov, 36
Mario Rinaldi, 35
Johny Hendricks, 34
Junior dos Santos, 33
Paul Kelly, 33
Dustin Neace, 31

SEPT. 13

Yuri Vaulin, 54
Marcus Sursa, 35
Ronald LeBreton Jr., 32

SEPT. 14

Antonio Silva, 38
Chris Lozano, 35
Alan Omer, 29
Yuki Motoya, 28

SEPT. 15

John Marsh, 47
Rick Hawn, 38
Fernando Gonzalez, 34
Jesse Gross, 30
Horacio Gutierrez, 27

SEPT. 16

Roberto Traven, 49
Pablo Garza, 34
Brandon Halsey, 31

SEPT. 17

Michael Guymon, 43
Denis Kang, 40
Scott Jorgensen, 35
Sean Holden, 33
Hector Urbina, 30

SEPT. 18

Mike Pyle, 42
Abel Trujillo, 34
Felice Herrig, 33
Ashkan Mokhtarian, 32

SEPT. 19

Heather Clark, 37
Leandro Issa, 34
Matt Wiman, 34
Lewis Gonzalez, 30

SEPT. 20

Ryan Jensen, 40
Eric Schafer, 40
Quinn Mulhern, 33
Sarah Kaufman, 32

SEPT. 21

Josh Thomson, 39
Bianca Daimoni, 31
Martin Bravo, 24

SEPT. 22

Bob Sapp, 44
Forrest Petz, 42
Takanori Gomi, 39
Fredy Serrano, 38
Shamar Bailey, 35
Bruno Menezes, 32
Chuck O'Neil, 32
Mike de la Torre, 31
Elias Silverio, 31
Corey Anderson, 28

SEPT. 23

Shane del Rosario (1983-2013)
Jason Lambert, 40
Makoto Maeda, 40
Maro Perak, 35
Joe Riggs, 35
Sotaro Yamada, 34

SEPT. 24

Brad Pickett, 39
Sara McMann, 37
Brian Stann, 37
Kris McCray, 36
Roxanne Modafferi, 35
Dan Charles, 32
Chris Horodecki, 30

SEPT. 25

Todd Gouwenberg, 43
Olavo Belo, 38
Rashad Evans, 38
Allan Weickert, 36
Phil Davis, 33
Jake O'Brien, 33
Jessica Andrade, 26

SEPT. 26

Shinobu Aoyama, 44
David Branch, 36
Roger Gracie, 36
Hugo Viana, 35
John Dodson, 33
Ross Pearson, 33
Santiago Ponzinibbio, 31
Dileno Lopes, 30
Tom Breese, 26

SEPT. 27

Shannon Ritch, 47
Sasa Mitrovic, 32
Josh Bacallao, 29
Islam Makhachev, 26

SEPT. 28

Fedor Emelianenko, 41
Jeremy Mahon, 38
Eduardo Felipe , 37
Justin Ledet, 29

SEPT. 29

James Te Huna, 36
Andre Galvao, 35
Che Mills, 35
Eric Spicely, 31
Niko Price, 28

SEPT. 30

Herb Dean, 47
Yves Edwards, 41
Latoya Walker, 38
Damacio Page, 35
Scott Holtzman, 34
Neal Ewing, 32

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