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Mirko “Cro Cop” Says he Admitted to UFC he Took Growth Hormone, Insists Retirement Due to Injury

Kelsey Mowatt


Not surprisingly, the final chapter of Mirko “Cro Cop’s” storied career hasn’t quite ended, as the heavyweight has opened up about why he’s been suspended, following his retirement announcement.

As you certainly know, recently “Cro Cop” made headlines by announcing he’s hanging up the gloves, on account of a serious shoulder injury he’s incurred. The Croatian star was scheduled to fight Anthony Hamilton at UFC FN 79 on November 21st in Seoul.

But, following that announcement, the UFC relayed that “Cro Cop” has been suspended, due to a possible anti-doping violation. The promotion, however, didn’t offer any specific details.

More recently, the 41 year-old has reportedly posted an extensive statement on his personal website, in which he presents his side of the story. According to “Cro Cop”, after he was tested by USADA officials, he informed the UFC he had taken “a little mix of growth hormone” to heal his shoulder. But, the vaunted striker says he elected to retire, because of the severity of the injury.

Here is some of what “Cro Cop” had to say:

Growth hormones are on the list of banned substances. I knew that already. But there was no other way to save my shoulder–at least in my mind–without combining the blood plasma with growth hormones.

Unfortunately it turns out the only cure was a good break and rest. But a desperate man will try anything.
After 6 days of growth hormone and plasma injections, the USADA came to test me. I gave them my blood sample and urine samples and immediately told the UFC about the test. I also said that I had been taking blood plasma and growth hormone since nothing else was working.

I wanted to have this fight, at any cost. I knew if I didn’t have the fight after an 8 month layoff, it was the end for me. I could not afford to wait 5 or 6 more months to fight.

The test results are not even finished, and I’m not even sure if they are going to find anything because I used the treatment for a few days to recover my shoulder and fight, that’s it. Now they have given me some kind of suspension because I told them myself that I have been getting the treatment, and to top it all of I pulled out of the fight.

It is stupid to even mention that the hormone only heals the body and that the dosages can probably only be detected for a few (10) days. I would be perfectly clean until the fight…

…Saturday training was the last one that I had with preparations in mind, which is when my shoulder “broke” its limit. The MRI showed on Monday that it was a ruptured muscle and damaged tendons, filled with liquid.
And that is when I broke and made my decision.

This calling out and suspensions have no meaning anymore, but I do understand the UFC; I get it. They just want to defend themselves.

So, there you have it. It will be interesting to see how “Cro Cop’s” comments are taken by the MMA world.

The former PRIDE Grand Prix champ finished his career having won three straight, and in his last outing, “Cro Cop” stopped Gabriel Gonzaga.


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