Rob Gronkowski on his hockey days: 'I need the action so left wing, obviously'

Mike Petraglia
December 31, 2015 - 9:55 am
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FOXBORO -- Before taking off for South Florida, Rob Gronkowski did an interview with NBC's Jeremy Roenick to air for Friday's Winter Classic. Then Roenick gave him a gift. He supplied him with Bruins hockey sweater and a Winter Classic scarf to wear during another interview, with the local media. "Yeah, I got it from Jeremy Roenick. I always watched him growing up as a kid, being from Buffalo, being a Sabres fan," Gronkowski said. "He gave me a little jersey for the interview with a Winter Classic scarf so this is super cool. This might be my new jersey. Gronkowski likely won't get a chance to actually watch his interview with Roenick or the Winter Classic itself. "We'€™ll probably have practice or something because we practice every day, all day long, so we probably won'€™t have time to watch the game," Gronkowski said. On Thursday, Gronkowski let everyone in on a little secret. He was quite the hockey player before turning to basketball in high school. With his huge 6-foot-6, 240-pound Zdeno Chara-like frame, one would assume he was on defense. "No, I'€™d be left wing. When I played defense is cool but I need the action so left wing obviously," Gronkowski said. "I was super aggressive, fights, goal scores, checks." How well could Gronk skate? "Pretty good. I'€™m alright now whenever I go back and play with my friends back home," Gronkowski said. "I used to play with all the top dawgs growing up in Buffalo, but I don'€™t have those skills really anymore." Gronkowski said he never got the chance to try out the Gillette Stadium ice. Did anybody he played with growing up make it to the National Hockey League? "No, a couple of guys made it to Division One stuff. My one buddy got drafted out of high school but no one I grew up with is in the NHL now," Gronkowski said. "But my brother'€™s wife'€™s brother [Dylan Blujus] is in the AHL. He was just drafted two years ago in the second round." Oh yeah, what about the Dolphins Sunday? "They bring it every game. They'€™re physical. They don'€™t let up," Gronkowski said. "They play together and just every single game they'€™re ready to go so we'€™ve got to be ready to go. We know they'€™re going to be ready to go this Sunday so [we'€™ve got to] go out and play our game. "I feel good. Just like any other game we'€™re taking on we'€™ve got to prepare, prepare hard, mentally, physically. We'€™ve been practicing hard. We'€™ve got another solid day tomorrow to go down in Miami, but we'€™ve got to be ready for when it comes to kick-off on Sunday." Does the early travel schedule this week change up anything for him? "Yeah, it changes up where we sleep, where we'€™re practicing, the weather," Gronkowski said, before noting there will be no going out to party on New Year's Eve. "In our room. Bed check," Gronkowski said. "We'€™re just worried about the Miami Dolphins and going out there and playing together and getting that win." For more Patriots news, visit weei.com/patriots. DraftKings DraftKings has your shot to play for FREE in the $1 Million Fantasy Football Contest THIS SUNDAY! First place takes home $100,000! FOR FREE ENTRY, CLICK HERE.