Stewart and Burns played together at Manly from 2005 to 2007.
Burns moved from Rovers to St Helens back in 2014, but failed to nail down a regular place in the starting line-up at Langtree Park, so joined Leigh on loan halfway through last season.
“I was very good friends with Travis Burns who was here,” Stewart told Love Rugby League.
“I was looking for a move to somewhere in England and everything he told me about Leigh and the club appealed.
“He helped to put me in touch with Derek [Beaumont], one thing lead to another and I haven’t looked back.”
Stewart admitted the past few months have been a new experience for everyone involved with the Centurions.
The 33-year old joined the Greater Manchester club on a two-year deal after spending last season at Catalans.
“This is unchartered ground for everyone,” he said.
“I don’t know another side who’ve had such a mix of players come in as well as going up into the next league above.”
Stewart said he was happy to be helping fellow new Leigh recruits Eloi Pelissier and Anton Maria with the language, which was the other way round in 2016.
The three played together at Catalan last season before moving to the Centurions.
“It’s nice to have the shoe on the other foot where I’m helping them with the language and the stuff at training whereas last year I was like a duck out of water,” he said.
“Coming to an English-based club it’s the first time for them.
“I think they’ve both had breakout pre-seasons and it’s probably something they needed to get out of their comfort zone.”