Updated: Jul 19, 2020
WWE Elite Flashback Series 3 Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat is one of the more sought after figures from the entire Flashback Series.
Although often overshadowed by the elusive Harley Race figure, this Steamboat is one of my favorites in my collection. I was a big fan of the character, and I was hooked by his match with Macho Man Randy Savage at WrestleMania 3 for the Intercontinental Championship.
This figure captures "The Dragon" perfectly, from that historic match at the Pontiac Silverdome. Complete with the famous black IC Title, Mattel did a great job with the gear, right down to the logo on the back of the white gi to the red headband.
I got lucky with this figure. On random trip to Walmart I strolled by the toy section, as was standard before the pandemic, and saw this beauty hanging by himself on the peg. It was the only Elite in the store. I'm sure all you collectors can understand the feeling of your heart dropping to your stomach when you see a figure that you've been wanting to add to your collection and you thought paying a retail price has long since passed. The box was in immaculate condition as well. I think I held the figure in my hand during the drive home to ensure the packaging would stay in pristine condition.
In 2019 I was fortunate enough to get this figure signed, for the low cost of a general admission ticket, at a Columbus Clippers (AAA affiliate of the Cleveland Indians) game.
I got there early and was able to beat the crowd when Steamboat set up shop to sign autographs. I was wearing a Rickey "The Dragon" Steamboat shirt I got in a Pro Wrestling Crate and was equipped with a yellow paint pen. I was maybe 5th in line. Steamboat could not have been more pleasant as he signed my figure. He also had a version of the black Intercontinental Championship with him and had me hold it during my picture with him (shoutout random stranger who did a great job taking the pictures).
So as you can see, this is a special figure in my collection. From the memories of him being in a match that helped me fall in love with professional wrestling, to the memory of finding the figure on the peg, to getting that bad boy autographed, this figure will always hold a special place in my heart.