Mirko â€œCro Copâ€ Filipovic will face off against highly accomplished kickboxer Jerome LeBanner at DREAM 4, according to Cro Copâ€™s blog at mma-id.com.
“Cro Cop” (23-6 MMA, 1-2 UFC) was a PrideFC standout who holds victories over Josh Barnett, Wanderlei Silva, Kevin Randleman, Aleksander Emelianenko and Mark Coleman. After competing for years in PRIDE, Filipovic was acquired by the UFC in late-2006. Poised to become the next contender for the heavyweight championship, Cro Cop disappointed fans and management suffering back to back losses inside the octagon, one of which was a highlight reel knockout by Gabriel Gonzaga.
Since being shipped off to Japan after his poor UFC performances, Filipovic defeated Tatsuya Mizuno at DREAM 1 this past March. Mirko has previously stated that his stint in Japan is only temporary, and that he will return to the UFC in time.
Jerome LeBanner is an extremely aggressive striker who amasses an impressive 73-14 kickboxing record. In kickboxing, LeBanner holds notable wins over Mike Bernardo, Ernesto Hoost, Maurice Smith, Sam Greco, Peter Aerts, Mark Hunt, Don Frye, Gary Goodridge, Remy Bonjasky and Hong Man Choi. LeBanner actually lost via decision to a then-unknown Mirko Cro Cop in 1996, in a bout which was the Croatianâ€™s professional debut. LeBanner began competing in mixed martial arts in 2001, and has since put up a 3-1-1 MMA record. LeBanner fought to a draw against Bob Sapp at K-1 Premium Dynamite in 2004.