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Canucks in the Dragons' Den

by Derek Jory / Vancouver Canucks

Pitching Jim Treliving an idea can be a tall order, but he doesn’t need to be convinced about what team to support during the NHL playoffs.

By day, the 70-year-old is a potential investor to aspiring entrepreneurs on the incredibly entertaining reality show Dragons’ Den.

By night, Treliving, a proud Manitoban hailing from Virden, is a tried and true fan of the Vancouver Canucks.

“I love being a Canucks fan, I’ve been one a long time,” said Treliving. “It’s fantastic being a fan right now and all I can say is Go Canucks Go.”

Currently working on season six of Dragons’ Den, Treliving took time out of his schedule to throw on a custom Dragon Canucks #1 jersey for an impromptu photoshoot and to make a bold prediction for the team he’s been rooting for since the early ‘70s.

Treliving, part chairman and owner of Boston Pizza and Mr. Lube, began bleeding Canucks blue and green when he moved to Vancouver in 1976. A short while later a good friend of his, someone by the name of Pat Quinn, was named president and general manager of the Canucks.

As the personal relationship between Treliving and Quinn grew, naturally a business partnership was formed and delicious Boston Pizza pizza is still available at Rogers Arena today because of it.

No stranger to hockey, Treliving stood tall between the pipes growing up. He admired Cesare Maniago and played like him right up until junior, when he walked away from the game and joined the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

Once a constable, now a dragon, always a Canucks fan - one that believes this is the year for Vancouver.

“The ’82 run was the biggest one I saw and I think this is going to be the same equivalent to that,” said Treliving, whose son Brad is assistant GM of the Phoenix Coyotes.

“I think they’ve got a good team and this is about as close as I’ve seen to a great team since Stan Smyl was playing. They could go the final and they could win the Stanley Cup and I hope they do.”

As a member of a five-person firing squad on Dragons’ Den, including Toronto Maple Leafs fan Kevin O'Leary, who is slowly but surely starting to support the Canucks, Traliving and company are approached with some of the most ingenious and ridiculous ideas known to man.

None, however, could help the Canucks this post-season; the dragons have yet to be approached about an anti-shark spray.

“Nothing for getting rid of Sharks, no, but they’ll be toothless soon anyways,” he laughed.

Not soon enough for most.

The Canucks are two wins from their first Stanley Cup Final appearance since 1994 and if they can close out the Sharks and compete for the Holy Grail, they’d face either the Tampa Bay Lightning or Boston Bruins.

If it ends up being a Canucks/Bruins Final, the question then becomes what to do with Boston Pizza locations in Vancouver.

During the Eastern Conference Quarterfinal between the Bruins and Montreal Canadiens, all Boston Pizza’s in Montreal became Montreal Pizza.

Vancouver Pizza does have a good ring to it, don’t you think?

“It might be an option in Vancouver, that’s for sure.”


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