WRESTLING NEWS
Ricky Steamboat: What Only Hardcore Fans Know About The Wrestling Legend
By DAVID BIXENSPAN
Facilitated Mother’s Reunion
During his ‘84 tour of Japan, Ricky Steamboat requested help from Japanese promoter Baba to locate his mother’s family. Baba had a TV announcer explain Steamboat’s search, and after skimming through 200 responses, Ricky’s mother’s real family was confirmed when one of his uncles produced a copy of his parents’ wedding album.
Learned Fire Breathing
WWF started to emphasize the wrestlers’ characters in 1991, and Steamboat became known as “The Dragon,” complete with an on-the-nose costume and breathing fire. He learned the art of fire breathing from circus performer Brian LaPalme, but he had reservations about the act when he saw the flames blow back at the instructor, singing his face. 
Vic Steamboat
Ricky’s brother Victor Blood was also a pro wrestler who adopted the name Vic Steamboat and made his biggest impact in the New England promotion, Mario Savoldi’s International Championship Wrestling. Vic’s biggest match in ICW was winning the promotion’s world title from Tony Atlas in 1990.
Main Eventing Opposite WM V
The legendary match between Ricky Steamboat and Ric Flair over the NWA World Heavyweight Championship in 1989 was nearly an hour-long match at Clash of Champions VI. The match was broadcasted live and free on TBS on April 2, 1989, opposite WrestleMania V on pay-per-view.
Scripted Match With Savage
Randy Savage’s match with Ricky Steamboat for the Intercontinental Championship at WrestleMania III is one of the greatest wrestling matches ever. Savage insisted on laying the match out in advance move-for-move, instead of improvising, and Steamboat explained, “We wrote it down on these yellow tablets, and we had about 250 steps.”