Dolphins recruit Edrick Lee is ready to put on his dancing shoes and strut his stuff, both on and off the field.
That's a massive step forward for the NRL winger considering for an extended period of 2021 it hurt to walk, let alone dance, due to complications from a foot injury that led to him missing the entire season.
The 30-year-old scored 14 tries in 16 games for Newcastle last season and is ready to reunite at the Dolphins with cousin Brenko Lee, who he lived with as a youth and played alongside at Canberra.
Dancing with Brenko, and Broncos playmaker Ezra Mam, who is also a cousin, for the Wagga Torres Strait Islander Dance Company is on Edrick's bucket list in 2023.
"We used to do Torres Strait Islander dancing together in Brisbane...me, Brenko and Ezra," Edrick told AAP.
"All three of us are waiting for the opportunity, when the time is right, to get back dancing together.
"To come back home here and be able to dance and reconnect with my culture and family after a decade is a big thing for me.
"Hopefully it shows in my footy as well. It is something that I had been missing."
Edrick had also been missing Brenko, who left Brisbane Broncos to join the Dolphins.
"I pinch myself every day that I see Brenko at training because it feels weird seeing him in real life rather than just talking to him on the phone," Lee said.
"We lived together in Logan for a fair while as kids and played together at Canberra. Our families are close. Our dads are brothers.
"We have been doing sleepovers and playing footy and PlayStation together for as long as we can remember."
The cousins made their Maroons debuts in the State of Origin decider in 2020 with Edrick scoring a crucial try in Queensland's series-winning match. Wayne Bennett, his Dolphins mentor, was Queensland coach.
"That was a memorable night but the whole camp was awesome because I got to enjoy the company of mastercoach away from footy and find out what he is really like away from the spotlight," Lee said.
"Wayne is as fun off the camera as he is on the camera."
Lee's foot injury, which developed in 2021 from a stress fracture to a full fracture of the second metatarsal, is not giving him any more grief.
"I got a lot of confidence coming back and competing (in 2022) at the top level. Scoring tries was a bonus. So long as I am playing with a smile on my face," Lee said.
"I am just making sure I do everything right here at the Dolphins."