WWE legend The Iron Sheik dies at 81
WWE legend The Iron Sheik has died.
A statement was shared on The Iron Sheik’s Twitter account Wednesday with the news that the WWE Hall of Fame wrestler has died. No cause of death was given, but Sheik’s representatives said he “died peacefully.”
RESPECT THE LEGEND FOREVER pic.twitter.com/Cr6CC9pXSO
— The Iron Sheik (@the_ironsheik) June 7, 2023
Sheik, whose real name was Hossein Khosrow Ali Vaziri, held the WWF World Heavyweight Championship in 1983. He is the only Iranian champion in WWE history.
WWE paid tribute to Sheik shortly after the news was announced.
WWE is saddened to learn that Hossein Khosrow Ali Vaziri, known the world over as WWE Hall of Famer The Iron Sheik, passed away on Wednesday, June 7, at age 81.
— WWE (@WWE) June 7, 2023
Sheik mastered the art of being a heel and was known for his larger-than-life personality. He held the World Heavyweight Championship for less than a month before losing it to Hulk Hogan. His rivalry with Hogan played a big role in Hulk becoming one of the biggest stars in wrestling entertainment history.
Sheik left and returned to WWE multiple times in the late 1980s and 1990s before walking away for good after his final match in 1992. He also made regular appearances on “The Howard Stern Show” and remained a popular figure in pop culture.
More recently, Sheik (or those who ran his social media accounts) became known for his hilarious and incredibly over-the-top tweets.