WWE Hall of Fame member and first "Triple Crown" champion Pedro Morales died at age 76, WWE reported Tuesday night.
Born in Puerto Rico, Morales began his fight career at age 17 when he moved to New York City in 1959.
In 1970, Morales won Ivan Koloff's WWE Championship at Madison Square Garden and established himself as an icon for Hispanic Americans, especially in New York City and the rest of the northeastern United States.
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Morales became a wrestling legend in 1972 when he faced his friend Bruno Sammartino in the first Showdown on Shea Supercard at Shea Stadium. A whopping 22,000 fans watched the game, which lasted 75 minutes before the referees considered it a draw due to the strict 11 p.m. sports touch of curfew.
Morales retained his championship title for almost three years (1,027 days to be exact) until December 1973, when Stan Stasiak finally beat him.
In addition to the WWE Championship, Morales held the title of the World Tag Team with Bob Backlund and the Intercontinental Championship at the same time, which made him the first Triple Crown Champion in the then World Wrestling Federation.
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Morales retired from the ring in 1987, but continued to work with WWE and WCW as a commentator in Spanish.
The stars of the WWE remembered the fallen legend.
"Goodbye to a great friend, one of the wiser and friendliest fighters I've ever met, when I started in WWE, he told me:" You can not stop talent. "I followed those words for the rest of my career. RIP Pedro Morales, "Bret Hart tweeted.
The iron sheikh wrote, "ONE OF THE BEST THINGS, THE EXCELLENT WORKER OF PEDRO MORALES, EXCELLENT BABY MEAT, EXCELLENT BUSINESSMAN, EXCELLENT BEING HUMAN, RIP TO MY BROTHER."
Sean "X-Pac" Waltman wrote"Pedro Morales was a great man and I am honored to be able to say that I met him. #RIPPedroMorales #PedroMorales".
"My friend Pedro Morales, with whom I had the honor to work twice! RIP and you will always be remembered for your saying & # 39; I am ready for any kind of action & # 39;" Ric Flair tweeted.
The Singh Brothers admitted that they had never met Morales, but they still impacted their lives in a big way, because Bret Hart shared with them the same advice that Morales had given him: