Last week on RAW, the WWE announced that Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat will be inducted into the 2009 class of the WWE Hall of Fame. Congratulations are in order for this all-time great who had his career cut short by a devastating back injury (forcing his early retirement in 1994). While "The Dragon" had a long and prosperous career, you can't help but wonder how much longer he'd have wrestled.
Needless to say, it was great to see Steamboat on the air on RAW being interviewed by Todd Grisham. While no one was surprised when Chris Jericho interrupted the interview, it was an awesome segment with Steamboat showing that he could still cut an excellent promo and sell like no one else.
Even more interesting was when Mighty Mel (my wrestling partner in crime) saw Steamboat and said "He looks good! He still looks really good!". It was nice for the younger generation to get to see a Legend who doesn't look as if he'd stumbled out of a soup kitchen and kind of ironic too.
The irony? Mighty Mel is a big fan of the Hardys. Had she grown up during Steamboat's heyday, I have no doubt she'd have been a big fan of Steamboat too. Like Matt and Jeff, Steamboat had legions of female fans who adored him. His high-flying fast-paced style would have won her over just as the Hardys do now.
So congratulations to Mr. Steamboat on his upcoming HOF induction and congratulations on still looking really good!
Mike Rickard II is the author of Wrestling's Greatest Moments (published by ECW Press), a look back at the greatest matches, angles, and feuds of the last thirty years. The book is now availble for pre-order through amazon.com