Ricky Steamboat On His Rivalry With Ric Flair, Randy Savage, Wrestling Getting Away From Basic Structure

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Ricky “the Dragon” Steamboat was a guest on VOC Nation’s In the Room with Pro Wrestling Illustrated’s Brady Hicks. Ricky talked about putting together his Wrestlemania 3 match, the evolution of the product, and more. Here are highlights from the Dragon:

On high spots in today’s product:

“This generation has taken all of that high flying to different levels…these guys are falling out of the sky; as we know it does take a toll on their bodies. I honestly think that we’re getting away from the basic structure of wrestling and it causes wrestlers’ careers to come up short because of injuries.”

On working with young talent:

“Most times than not, the guys and girls come up short (in telling a story). They understand what I’m trying to say (but they don’t put it into practice); you just don’t put moves and holds in your match for the sake of filling in time. You need to be able to connect the dots. Fans watching need to be able to connect the dots in your match and (follow) the story that you’re trying to tell.”

On his Wrestlemania 3 match with Randy Savage:

“I go back and watch myself do those little segments and I cringe. I say to myself ‘damn Ricky you’re terrible when it came to that speech therapy stuff.’ Get me in the ring and it’s a different story. With big shows and pay per views, most of the main event guys would get to have tune-up matches prior to the big shows (in house shows). Unfortunately, Randy and I didn’t have that opportunity. I got with Randy and (told him) that we need to collaborate…we wanted to go out there and have the match of the night. We had 21 false finishes in a match that went less than 17 minutes. When we finished the last step in writing it all down, we thought we were going to go out there and have one heck of a match.”

On his rivalry with Ric Flair:

“We went back and forth in different companies spanning 17 years. We wrestled each other hundreds of times, especially back in the mid-Atlantic. We even had a month of 90-minute matches…I tell that to some of the young kids today and they can’t believe it.”

On mentoring the young talent during his WCW run:

“(Shane Douglas) was a young man that was eager to respectfully learn. (When I was talking to him) you could see his eyes light up; that was the light bulb clicking in his brain. He was very coachable, like a sponge. Austin was the same way. I said to the office that (Austin’s) got it and you need to do more with him. It wasn’t too long after that he moved to the WWE and became Stone Cold, and the rest is history.”

In the Room airs live on VOC Nation every Tuesday night at 9PM ET with Pro Wrestling Illustrated contributor Brady Hicks and crew, legendary guests, and listener calls.