Rob Gronkowski is a three-time Super Bowl champion and one of the most recognisable stars in American sport but this weekend at WrestleMania 36 he will set foot on the The Grandest Stage of Them All.
The former New England Patriots tight end and future NFL hall of famer will host WrestleMania 36 which, for the first time, will take place over two nights on Saturday 4 and Sunday 5 April.
A self-confessed WWE fanatic, Gronkowski made a fleeting appearance at WrestleMania 33 when he stepped in the ring to help friend Mojo Rawley in the Andre The Giant Memorial Battle Royal.
A veteran of the NFL for nearly a decade, Gronkowski believes the same key tenet that led to a historic sporting career with lead to success in the WWE: preparation.
“Playing football in the NFL and being around the best of the best has definitely prepared me for WrestleMania. You can’t just walk out on the field and expect to be ready to compete, you have to practice, workout and know your plays,” he said.
“It’s the same thing for WrestleMania. I can’t expect to go out there and jump off the top rope or cut a promo, everything is about practice and that’s what I’ve taken from my time in the NFL.
“If you want to be great in any industry, you have to do the work and prepare. In the time I have been with WWE, I can see the Superstars are the same way and they want it just as bad.
It’s official! I’m hosting @WrestleMania this year...and it’s gonna be too big for just one night. For the 1st time, #WrestleMania will be a 🚨2-NIGHT🚨event: Saturday, April 4 AND Sunday, April 5 on @WWENetwork! Tell you more this Friday night on #SmackDown at 8 ET on @FOXTV.— Rob Gronkowski (@RobGronkowski) March 18, 2020
Widely considered the greatest tight end to ever play in the NFL, he believes the Super Bowl and WrestleMania are the biggest stage in their respective industries.
“The Super Bowl is the biggest stage in sports and WrestleMania is the biggest stage in Sports Entertainment,” he said.
“One of the main similarities is they are both a team game. In order to win the Super Bowl you have to be a team. In order to have a successful WrestleMania, everyone has to work like a team from the beginning to the end.”
30-year-old Gronkowski’s long-standing relationship with the WWE stands him in good stead to host one of the biggest WrestleMania’s of all time.
The two-night spectacular features WWE Champion Brock Lesnar vs Drew McIntyre, The Undertaker vs AJ Styles, Edge vs Randy Orton in a Last Man Standing match and Raw Women’s Champion Becky Lynch’s match with Shayna Baszler as well as many, many more unmissable matches.
“I have been a fan and watching since I was in second grade,” he said of his grounding in WWE.
“My dad brought me to the matches when they came to Buffalo and I was a huge fan of Stone Cold Steve Austin, D-Generation X and Val Venis. To be part of an atmosphere that I grew up watching is an honour. On top of that, to get the chance to work with my good friend Mojo Rawley is a dream come true.”
Gronkowski or ‘Gronk’ already boasts a huge fan base and has performed in some of the biggest events of the last decade, but he described WWE’s global fan base as ‘incredible’.
“Since my appearance at WrestleMania 33, it’s been insane how many people bring up that appearance wherever I am,” he said.
“Whether I am here in the states, or in another country, the fans always remember that. WWE is a global phenomenon and to be part of the first-ever two-night WrestleMania is truly an honour.”
In a period of global uncertainty, WrestleMania’s newest host is sure to light up the The Super Bowl of Sports Entertainment.
“It’s super important to me and an honour to be part of any WrestleMania. The fact that it’s the first ever two-night special makes it that much cooler.
“To come here during these tough times when people around the world need entertainment more than ever, and to have the opportunity to provide that to them is pretty awesome.”
Read more on WrestleMania 36:
• Edge: WrestleMania return is an honour
• Drew McIntyre: I will become first British WWE Champion