Did the Iron Sheik Really Win a Gold Medal at the 1968 Olympics?

Here is the latest in a series of examinations into urban legends related to pro wrestling and pro wrestlers and whether they are true or not.

PRO WRESTLING URBAN LEGEND: The Iron Sheik won a Gold Medal for Wrestling at the 1968 Olympics.

In March of 2008, the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA) inducted wrestler The Iron Sheik into its Hall of Fame.

They sent out a press release to honor the wrestler. It said, in part:

Khosrow Vaziri better known as The Iron Sheik has terrorized his opponents while entertaining generations of Pro Wrestling fan’s for close to four decades. Although The Iron Sheik turned Pro in 1972 he has been competing on the grappling scene since the mid 1960s and was a member of his native Iran’s Olympic Wrestling Team during the 1968 Mexico Olympics. In 1971, he won the AAU Greco Roman Gold Metal. Vaziri was also once a bodyguard for the family of the Shah of Iran.

The bit I wish to spotlight is:

was a member of his native Iran’s Olympic Wrestling Team during the 1968 Mexico Olympics.

Is that true?
Continue reading “Did the Iron Sheik Really Win a Gold Medal at the 1968 Olympics?”

How Did a Hug Help Turn Stone Cold Steve Austin Into a Star?

Here is the latest in a series of examinations into urban legends related to pro wrestling and wrestlers and whether they are true or not.

PRO WRESTLING URBAN LEGEND: An interesting confluence of events (including an untimely hug) led to Stone Cold Steve Austin becoming a major wrestling star.

Obviously, if you track any wrestler (or heck, any celebrity period), there is a “path” that led to them becoming famous, and usually there will be turning points along the way where you can stop and say “Wow, what if ____ had not happened, would ____ still be such a star?” For instance, what would Michael J. Fox’s career be like if Eric Stoltz had stayed on as the lead of Back to the Future? Heck, what would Fox’s career be like if Matthew Broderick had not turned down the role of Alex Keaton on Family Ties (The “P” was Fox’s idea)?

However, rarely do you have such a peculiar confluence of events as those that came together to make Steve Austin one of the most famous professional wrestlers in the world.
Continue reading “How Did a Hug Help Turn Stone Cold Steve Austin Into a Star?”