Inspired by Lord of the Rings, George Powell asked artist VC Johnson to work on creating a new dragon graphic in 1980. He suggested designing it in a logo-like oval shape since its intended use was for stickers and t-shirts. The graphic was finalized during the Gold Cup contest series and both Caballero and McGill rocked the graphic on their boards at the Upland Finals. The Oval Dragon was used on a price point series of decks and assemblies and also became the official top graphic for all Powell-Peralta decks until it was replaced in 1987 by the Winged Ripper graphic.
Discovered at a Virginia Beach contest by Lance, a young Mike Vallely was asked to join the Powell-Peralta team and quickly rose to fame as a premier street skater. After initially rejecting the Roach graphic, Vallely worked closely with VCJ on an elephant theme. Mike and his elephant deck were both very popular.