SHREVEPORT, La (KMSS/KTAL) – With the sweep in the Robertson Cup semifinals, the Mudbugs are one win away from their second championship in just their fifth season of junior hockey existence. If the Bugs can finish the job, one family will have a champion from both of Shreveport’s greatest junior hockey teams.
“I would say it’s life changing, and I think for anyone who spends a decent amount of time down here, it’s life changing,” said Dominick Procopio. “You’re away from home, but it’s like you have a second family.”
“Guys like Soupy, guys like Musky, Tommy Scott, the whole staff. It’s a family,” said Giovanni Procopio.
The Shreveport Mudbugs are a family, but two players go a step further.
“You know I wouldn’t ask for a better brother,” said Gio. “He’s amazing. I love him. He’s taught me so much about hockey and life in general, so I’m proud of him.”
“He’s done everything here and had a spectacular two years just on his own working his bag off, and I couldn’t be more proud of him,” said Dominick.
Dominick Procopio was a Mudbug from 2016-2018, and capped off his junior career raising the Robertson Cup as captain. As a true little brother, Gio followed in Dom’s footsteps, moving to Shreveport two years later.
“I was starting to get my junior career ready to go, and I knew Shreveport was an option for me,” said Gio. “So, just to watch that team come together and do what they did, it was amazing. I called him right away after and I was like ‘Dom, I’m so proud of you man. You’ve worked so hard for this,’ and he just said ‘I love you man, You’re next.’”
Now, Gio has that chance to be next as the Mudbugs seek their first Robertson cup since Dominick hoisted it two seasons ago. And for him, it’s going to be a little different this time around.
“It’s strange to be in the stands,” said Dominick. “That competitive edge when you’re playing kind of takes over. I’m really not too calm, cool and collected. I get pretty anxious, but it’s definitely fun. I was having the time of my life watching him.”
“I wouldn’t want it any other way for my family to be here, and I’m just stoked for the moment,” said Gio.
And who better to prepare them for that moment than a guy who knows a little bit about winning a championship.
“I just told the guys, this is a time of your life you’ll never get back,” said Dominick. “This group right here, this moment, it’s never going to happen again. So, don’t waste it. Just enjoy it. Just be grateful you’re in it because people would kill to be in your position.”
“I couldn’t ask for a better group of guys, a better group of coaches or a better place to be,” said Gio.