After winning what announcer Joe Rogan referred to as a “weird looking fight that looks like a sparring match,” Frank Mir was hardly in a celebratory mood. Despite knocking out Mirko Cro Cop with less than a minute in the final round, Mir admitted to being upset with his performance.
“I’ll make the statement that a sh—y win is better than a sh—y loss,” Mir said after the fight. “Other than that I’m completely pissed off about my performance.”
Mir spent the majority of the 14 minute fight pushing Cro Cop against the cage. Anytime Mir tried to take the fight to the ground, Cro Cop was able to defend. As the chorus of the boos of the 16,000 fans at Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis grew louder and louder, the fight stayed in neutral, with neither fighter mounting any significant offense.
“No disrespect, it was a pretty sh—y performance as far as I wanted to push the pace more,” Mir said. “While he’s swinging punches at you, it’s not as easy. He caught my attention with his velocity. He did some different things. Exiting out to my left threw me. As far as striking, I could have gotten more busy. And pushing him against the cage, I drilled so much but I made mistakes that I wasn’t making a month ago that I thought I had corrected like lifting my arm up and exposing my ribcage. I think I had too much time to think and I had to clear my mind.”
Mir made it clear that he didn’t feel disappointed with his conditioning in the fight. Mir came in at 252 pounds, 25 pounds heavier than his opponent but still far lighter than many of the top heavyweights in the division.
“I didn’t huff and puff one time, and in the past, I’ve always sort of been known for [bad]) conditioning,” he said. “That wasn’t a factor at all. I felt in great shape the whole time.”
In the fight’s closing moments, Mir was able to lock in a Muay Thai clinch and hit Cro Cop with a knee to the face that sent the Croation superstar crashing to the canvas. Mir followed up with a couple of punches as referee Herb Dean called the fight off.
“Without a single takedown, I was able to stand up for two and a half rounds with Mirko and get the knockout,” Mir said, trying to look at the positives of the fight. “I guess that’s a bonus. That’s the only positive I can take from this.
“At least I can take a breath easy knowing I didn’t go to decision.”