When it comes to professional wrestling and sports entertainment, there is no such thing as a consensus. Besides the WWE being the greatest promotion of all-time, it's hard to find anything else that all wrestling fans will agree on. Who is the greatest Superstar in wrestling history? You could ask that question to a half-dozen people and you could get a half-dozen answers. The same goes for the greatest match in wrestling history as we all have our favorites and there's no clear-cut winner of that title.
But dammit, Ricky Steamboat vs. Randy Savage at WrestleMania III is definitely in the conversation. While Hulk Hogan vs. Andre the Giant was the headliner of the event, Savage and Steamboat stole the show with a classic encounter that included an amazing 21 false finishes.
Steamboat recently spoke with WrestlingInc about that match some 31 years later and he revealed many interesting details. Savage was notorious for planning out his matches step-by-step but he and Steamboat went to the extreme in preparation for this match.
"I was really stressed out before that match," said Steamboat. "I kept going through the match and all of the false finishes over and over and over in my mind, but, God, that was hard to do because customarily you would understand back then, a lot of the matches, we called it in the ring. Nothing was really set up from A to Z like this one."
"We took notes on a legal pad, a yellow legal pad, and, God, I can't remember how many steps we had, but once we got the match down, I'll give you an example, at night, I would get with Randy and say, 'okay, number 32 is this, this, and this. Tell me the rest of the match.' And he would go, 'number 33 is this, this, and this. 34 is…' and we would quiz each other back and forth, back and forth, just so we would have it."
But Steamboat does still have one regret from the match, and that is there wasn't a false finish No. 22.
"If I was to add something to that match, it would have been this one moment to which I would have come off the top rope with my dive, which was my finish and I would have had a 1-2 count and Randy kick out just so the fans could have a little curve ball thrown in there." Steamboat explained, "back then, you never really prostituted your finish, but I think it would have fit. It would've worked. You see it sometimes in the main events today, a guy's finish, especially with two top guys, and the other guy kick out only later on in the match to be caught in the finish again and for it to work."
Even without the kick out of Steamboat's finisher, the match remains one of the most iconic in WWE history. Wrestling Digest once labeled it the greatest match in WrestleMania history and it would be the springboard to Hall of Fame careers for both Savage and Steamboat.
RELATED: WWE TRADEMARKS WCW PAY-PER-VIEW NAME