Tuesday, July 07, 2015

Ricky Steamboat at Dorton Arena (2015)

A cool photo taken by Eric Stace of Ricky Steamboat in front of fabled Dorton Arena in Raleigh, NC.  The photo was taken on 6/27/15 in advance of an appearance by Steamboat at a NCWA wrestling event outside Raleigh in Clayton, NC.

Most people refer to Rick Steamboat as "The Dragon" but we here at the Gateway still call him "The Hawaiian Punch", his nickname during the 1970s and early 1980s in the Mid-Atlantic territory.

Steamboat is holding a replica of the "Big Gold" belt, the version of the NWA title belt he held in 1989 during that memorable leg of his legendary feud with "Nature Boy" Ric Flair, which lasted from  the 1970s into the 1990s.

Steamboat won the NWA title from Flair on 2/20/89 in Chicago, IL and lost the title back to the Nature Boy on 5/7/89 in Nashville, TN.

It's appropriate we post this photo on a Tuesday. That was the regular night for wrestling at the Dorton Arena in Raleigh for decades.

Rumor has it Stace and veteran wrestling photographer Eddie Cheslock are planning a book of photos of some of the great stars of wrestling in front of some of the Mid-Atlantic area's classic venues. We'll keep an eye out for it.