Iron Sheik


Check out The Iron Sheik’s WWE Alumni profile here!

Title History

  • (New Zealand) British Empire/Commonwealth Heavyweight title [as Ali Vaziri] defeating Rick Martel (1977);
  • NWA Pacific Northwest Tag Team titles w/Bull Ramos defeating Jesse Ventura and Jerry Oates (April 18, 1978);
  • NWA (Vancouver) Canadian Tag Team titles w/Bobby Bass defeating Don Leo Jonathan and Jake Roberts (July 24, 1978);
  • NWA Mid-Atlantic Heavyweight title defeating Jim Brunzell (May 11, 1980);
  • NWA (Toronto) Canadian Heavyweight title [Great Hossein Arab] defeating Dewey Robertson (May 25, 1980);
  • NWA (Toronto) Canadian Heavyweight title [Great Hossein Arab] defeating Angelo Mosca (August 10, 1980);
  • NWA National Television title defeating Ron Garvin by disqualification in Tournament Final (May 28, 1983);
  • WWF World Heavyweight title [Managed by Fred Blassie] defeating Bob Backlund (December 26, 1983);
  • WWF Tag Team titles w/Nikolai Volkoff defeating Mike Rotunda and Barry Windham (March 31, 1985);
  • NWA 2000 (North Carolina) American Heritage Heavyweight Title defeating Timber (December 27, 1997);
  • WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment) Hall of Fame Inductee (April 2, 2005);

Iron Sheik Career Highlights

In The Beginning

  • Khosrow Vaziri started out as an amature wrestler and even won a medal at the 1968 Olympic Games, representing Iran.
  • ~~~Years later, this was proven to be a complete “work” just to enhance his gimmick while wrestling in America.
  • 1972: Khosrow Vaziri defected to the United States and became an assistant wrestling coach for the United States.
  • ~~~Khosrow Vaziri was a two-time AAU Champion and also a United States Olympic Greco Wrestling Coach.
  • 1972: Khosrow Vaziri caught the eye of Minnesota legend Verne Gagne at the Olympic Training sessions.
  • 1972: Khosrow Vaziri began training with Verne Gagne and debuted in the AWA at the end of that year.
  • 1979: Khosrow Vaziri signed with the World Wide Wrestling Federation, wrestling as “Hussein Arab”, managed by Fred Blassie.
  • June 4, 1979 – MSG: Hussein Arab won a Battle Royal to earn a title shot at WWF Champion Bob Backlund, in the main event.
  • Hussein Arab departed the WWWF and toured the Southern territories.

Mid-South Wrestling

  • Kosraw Vaziri went to work for Bill Watts’ Mid South Wrestling promotion and became known as The “Iron Sheik”.
  • November 26, 1981 – Superdome Extravaganza: The Iron Sheik defeated King Cobra.

World Wrestling Federation

  • 1983: The Iron Sheik signed with the World Wrestling Federation when it was becoming a national promotion.
  • ~~~The Iron Sheik gained a reputation of being the “master of the suplex” using many versions of the suplex.
  • December 26, 1983 – MSG: The Iron Sheik beat Bob Backlund for the WWF World title when Arnold Skaaland threw in the towel.
  • The Iron Sheik had title defenses against Chief Jay Strongbow, Pat Patterson, Bob Backlund, Salvatore Bellomo and Tito Santana.
  • January 23, 1984 – MSG: Hulk Hogan defeated Iron Sheik for the WWF World title in one of the most famous matches of all time.
  • ~~~Rumor has it, AWA promoter Verne Gagne offered Sheik $100,000 to break Hogans leg during the match.
  • ~~~Luckily, Iron Sheik is a smart man, and did the job, and informed Hogan and McMahon of the offer after the match.
  • July 23, 1984 – Brawl to End It All: The Iron Sheik defeated Tony Garea.
  • 1984: The Iron Sheik and Sgt Slaughter engaged in a bloody and violent feud that spread throughout the entire country.
  • June 16, 1984 – MSG: Sgt Slaughter defeated The Iron Sheik in a famous Boot Camp match.

World Wrestling Federation – The Iron Sheik and Nikolai Volkoff

  • 1984: The Iron Sheik formed a successful tag team with Nikolai Volkoff, managed by Fred Blassie.
  • March 31, 1985 – WrestleMania: The Iron Sheik and Nikolai Volkoff beat Mike Rotundo and Barry Windham for the Tag Team titles.
  • May 11, 1985 – SNME: The US Express and Ricky Steamboat defeated Iron Sheik and Nikolai Volkoff and George Steele.
  • July 8, 1985 – King of the Ring: The Iron Sheik made it all the way to the finals where he lost to Don Muraco.
  • ~~~Iron Sheik b Jim Brunzell | Iron Sheik b Ricky Steamboat | Iron Sheik b Tito Santana | Don Muraco b Iron Sheik.
  • November 7, 1985 – Wrestling Classic: The Junk Yard Dog defeated The Iron Sheik in the 1st Round of the Tournament.
  • April 2, 1986 – Wrestlemania 2: The Iron Sheik participated in the Invitational Battle Royal – won by Andre The Giant.
  • May 3, 1986 – SNME: The British Bulldogs defeated The Iron Sheik and Nikolai Volkoff in 2/3 Falls to retain the Tag Team titles.
  • July 14, 1986 – King of the Ring: Billy Jack Haynes defeated The Iron Sheik in the 1st Round of the Tournament.
  • March 14, 1987 – SNME: Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat defeated The Iron Sheik.
  • March 27, 1987 – WrestleMania III: The Iron Sheik and Nikolai Volkoff defeated the Killer Bees by disqualification when Jim Duggan interfered.
  • May 26, 1987: The Iron Sheik and Jim Duggan were arrested by New Jersey State Police.
  • ~~~Duggan was charged with possession of marijuana and drinking alcohol while driving.
  • ~~~Sheik was charged with possession of marijuana and cocaine.
  • ~~~Duggan received a conditional discharge and Sheik received one year probation.
  • ~~~What was so shocking about this was that they were feuding at the time, and the incident exposed the business.
  • 1987: The Iron Sheik left the WWF soon after this incident.

World Class Championship Wrestling

  • November 26, 1987 – Star Wars: Chris Adams and Matt Borne defeated The Iron Sheik and The Thing by disqualification.
  • December 25, 1987 – Star Wars: Matt Borne defeated The Iron Sheik to retain the Texas Heavyweight title.

American Wrestling Association

  • Dec 13, 1988 – Superclash III: The Iron Sheik made a surprise appearance when he attacks Sgt Slaughter during a match vs Col. DeBeers.

National Wrestling Alliance

  • May 7, 1989 – WrestleWar: Sting defeated The Iron Sheik to retain the NWA Television title.

World Wrestling Federation – Col Mustafa

  • 1991: The Iron Sheik returned to the WWF, but this time wrestling as “Col Mustafa”.
  • Col Mustafa aligned himself with Iraqi sympathizers Sgt Slaughter and General Adnan as the “Triangle of Terror”.
  • SummerSlam 1991: Hulk Hogan and Ultimate Warrior defeated the Triangle of Terror in a handicap match.
  • ~~~After the match, Adnan and Mustafa turned on Sgt Slaughter, who became a born again american patriot.

World Wrestling Federation – Manager

  • February 1997: The Iron Sheik returned to the WWF, as the co-manager for “The Sultan” Rikishi.

One Night Return

  • Wrestlemania X-7: The Iron Sheik won a special Gimmick battle royal, reigniting his feud with Sgt Slaughter in the process.

Keeping Busy

  • January 2002: The Iron Sheik was scheduled for an appearance on Opie and Anthony but it didn’t happen.
  • ~~~Sheik was detained coming back from Canada at the airport in Rochester because they believed he may have been a terrorist.
  • May 5, 2003: Iron Sheik’s daughter, Marissa Jeanne Vaziri age 27, was found strangled to death, in her apartment.
  • ~~~Marissa’s live-in boyfriend, Charles Warren Reynolds, 38, confessed to the crime and was charged with murder.
  • The Sheik has trained Ricky Steamboat, Buck Zumhoff, Jim Brunzell and Greg Gagne and has also had a hand in training Bret Hart.
  • April 2, 2005 – Hall of Fame Ceremony: The Iron Sheik was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame along with 6 others in Los Angeles.
  • September 10, 2005 – Piledriver Pro: The Patriot and Kid USA w/Johnny Valiant beat Sheik of Baghdad and Tiger Kahn w/The Iron Sheik.
  • March 5, 2006 – World Wrestling Legends PPV: “Hacksaw” Jim Duggan defeated Nikolai Volkoff w/The Iron Sheik.
  • March 10, 2007 – Pro Wrestling Xtreme: Aaron Walpole and The Iron Sheik defeated Reck when Sheik broke his cane over Reck’s head!
  • March 10, 2007 – Pro Wrestling Xtreme: The Iron Sheik cut a promo and put female wrestler Jaime D in the Camel Clutch
  • April 6, 2006 – Women’s Extreme Wrestling PPV: Sumie Sakai defeated “Prime Time” Amy Lee w/The Iron Sheik.
  • May 26, 2006 – Pro Wrestling Legends: Sgt. Slaughter defeated The Warlord (Iron Sheik interfered and Greg Valentine countered).
  • ~~~The Iron Sheik went nuts on a promo yelling about Slaughter, Hulk Hogan, Vince McMahon, the Olympics and everything else. . .
  • June 11, 2007 – Vince McMahon Appreciation Night: Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka and The Iron Sheik cut promos about Mr. McMahon.
  • June 18, 2007 – RAW: The Iron Sheik appeared on RAW and asked The Coach if he could have a talk show called “The Sheik Show”.
  • August 2, 2007 – National Wrestling Superstars: The Patriot w/The Iron Sheik defeated Johnny Candido w/Rocco Dorsey.
  • August 13, 2007 – RAW: William Regal presented “WWE Idol” with judges Maria Kanellis, Mick Foley and himself.
  • ~~~Contestents for WWE Idol were Jillian Hall, Nikolai Volkoff and The Iron Sheik, Lilian Garcia and Santino Marella.
  • December 1, 2007 – National Wrestling Superstars: Julio Dinero initiated a Dance Off which included the Iron Sheik!
  • January 20, 2008 – National Wrestling Superstars and FunkDaFied Wrestling Federation in Christiana, Delaware: (150 fans)
  • ~~~The Hate Breed (Rancid and Arkham w/The Iron Sheik) beat Dark Karnival (Jo-Jo and Chio) to win the FwF Tag Team titles.
  • March 10, 2008 – RAW: The Iron Sheik and Nikolai Volkoff vs. Mike Rotundo and Barry Windham (WrestleMania 1 Rematch).
  • April 19, 2008 – 1-Pro Wrestling: Mad Man Manson w/The Iron Sheik defeated Rene Dupree w/Prince Ameen in England.
  • October 2, 2009 – A Decade of SmackDown!: Sgt. Slaughter and The Iron Sheik both made special guest appearances.
  • November 16, 2009 – RAW: The Iron Sheik made a cameo and made some extremely negative comments about Hulk Hogan.
  • March 25, 2010 – Twin Wrestling Entertainment: WWF legend The Iron Sheik gave a short speech.
  • April 2, 2010: Danny Demanto and Kevin Matthews w/Brittney Savage beat Balls Mahoney and Mikey Pacifica w/Iron Sheik.
  • April 24, 2010 – Millenium Wrestling Federation: The Iron Sheik and Jay Lethal defeated “Stalker” Dylan Kage w/Paul Bearer.
  • ~~~No disqualification/Countout Match ending when Sheik made Kage submit to the camel clutch on the floor in the Sheik’s retirement match.
  • ~~~There was a huge celebration with the locker room hitting the ring after the bout to honor the Sheik! []
  • November 15, 2010 – Old School RAW: Santino and Vladimir Kozlov did an in-ring segment with the Iron Sheik and Nikolai Volkoff and Slick!
  • ~~~Vladimir Kozlov got to sing the Russian National Anthem with Nikolai Volkoff in what had to be the thrill of a lifetime for Kozlov.
  • ~~~The Iron Sheik started ranting into the microphone during his entrance cutting a heated promo on the Immortal Hulk Hogan.

    Dave Schoeneman wrote: I grew-up watching AWA wrestling faithfully every week from the time I was probably six or eight years old until it got uncomfortable to watch in the late 80s. I remember Hulk Hogan starting there, remember Shaun Michaels getting his start there, and also remember Nick Bockwinkle holding the title there for about 20 straight years. One thing I also remember, and have never read anywhere else, was the Iron Sheik refereeing matches for the AWA. I can’t prove that, but there has to be taped matches of it from the mid-to-late-seventies that show him reffing, somewhere. Maybe somebody can ask Kenny “The Sodbuster” Jaye. The two things that stood out was that dimple on his chin and his muscular build. I distinctly remember him being introduced as a referee for at least a few TV matches and thinking, “Why’s this guy refereeing.. he gets beat every week!” I don’t recall them introducing him as a person with a Middle-Eastern name, either. I think they gave him the name Jerry Something-or-another, but that was many moons ago, so I can’t recall that detail, but make no mistake about it.. The Iron Sheik did wrestle as a jobber and officiate for Vern Gagne.