Josip Nikolai Peruzović, known to wrestling fans as Nikolai Volkoff, passed away at the age of 70 on Sunday, according to wwe.com
He was best known for his WWE tag team championship–winning union with The Iron Sheik.
Volkoff’s in-ring career spanned the better part of 40 years, which featured battles against the likes of Sgt Slaughter, Hulk Hogan and Bruno Sammartino.
As one of the greatest villains sports-entertainment had ever seen, Volkoff’s infamous rendition of the Soviet National Anthem before his matches made him an instant icon in the eyes of the wrestling world as a superstar they truly loved to hate.
Jim Ross inducted Volkoff into the WWE Hall of Fame as part of the Class of 2005.
While his longtime tag team partner The Iron Sheikh, Hossein Khosrow Ali Vaziri, also paid tribute to the wrestler via Twitter.
MY BEST FRIEND. MY PARTNER. MY BROTHER. WE GET MORE HEAT THAN ANYONE ON EARTH. I TRUST HIM WITH MY LIFE. HE TAKE CARE OF ME WHEN I WAS DOWN. I MISS YOU FOREVER pic.twitter.com/pp7ZgQRDnb
— The Iron Sheik (@the_ironsheik) July 29, 2018
Multiple sources confirmed that the DJ did indeed take his own life