Wrestling legend The Iron Sheik, a former heavyweight champ and WWE Corridor of Famer, has died on the age of 81, reps for the wrestler introduced.

“Today, we gather with heavy hearts to bid farewell to a true legend, a force of nature, and an iconic figure who left an incredible mark on the world of professional wrestling. It is with great sadness that we share the news of the passing of The Iron Sheik, but we also take solace in knowing that he departed this world peacefully, leaving behind a legacy that will endure for generations to come,” an announcement on his social media web page learn.

Sheik, actual title Hossein Khosrow Ali Vaziri, was born in Iran in 1942 and was often known as one of many largest heels to ever step foot within the squared circle. He was additionally a former champ, beating Bob Backlund in 1983 and securing the title.

The Iron Sheik was considered one of Hulk Hogan‘s first rivals … and it was Hogan who in the end defeated Sheik for the belt, giving rise to Hulkamania.

the iron sheik

Sheik was additionally a WWF Tag Crew champion, successful the strap with Nikolai Volkoff in 1985.

In 2005, Sheik was inducted into the WWE Corridor of Fame by Sgt. Slaughter, longtime rival and former accomplice.

World Wrestling Leisure launched an announcement on his passing, saying “WWE is saddened to hear of the passing of WWE Hall of Famer The Iron Sheik, and extends its condolences to his family, friends, and fans.”

The Rock posted a heartfelt tribute to Sheik, recounting a narrative again when he was a rookie wrestler.

Booker T additionally weighed in, providing condolences, writing, “My thoughts and prayers go out to the family of @the_ironsheik. He is one of the very best to ever to do it. God speed.”

Actor Ken Jeong additionally shared a private interplay he had with Sheik … saying, “Will never forget when @the_ironsheik checked in at the start of the pandemic. Rest in peace, and much love to his family.”

In true Sheik style, the final tweet despatched from his account, simply hours earlier than his passing, was “F*** THE WILDFIRES”

Sheik is survived by his spouse of 47 years, Caryl, and his youngsters.


We mentioned The Iron Sheik’s legacy in a current episode of the Final Days Podcast, accessible on all podcast platforms.