Skip to main content

Meet the man behind the Canucks' eye-popping dragon Lunar New Year jersey


Trevor Lai hit a designer hat trick when he was chosen to create the Canucks Lunar New Year jersey for the third time. But this year, he felt even more pressure.

“Obviously, the year of the dragon is the most important one in terms of the Zodiac calendar,” said Lai. “The dragon itself represents leadership, power, excellence. So starting off with the design, I wanted to express that in combination with the Canucks’ skate logo.”

The final jersey crest is a golden dragon wrapped around the iconic skate. “And I figured that since the rest of the dragon was all gold and red, that it would be nice to include the beautiful green and blue of the Canucks’ colours in the eyes.”

For the shoulder patch, Lai designed a version of the Canucks’ orca logo jumping into the air. The jersey was an instant hit with fans.

“The red jerseys, thanks to our amazing fans, sold out in about a day. So immediately, the team reacted quickly, and we thought about what would be a great second jersey, and came up with the gold on gold,” said Lai.

The second jersey isn’t cheap. The gold version with a name and number on the back costs $888.

“Every jersey is hand-sewn here locally in B.C., it’s so intricate. Our crest makers actually can only make six of these jerseys in a day,” said Canucks head of retail Wynn Moody.

There are many more affordable items adorned with Lai’s dragon and orca designs for sale at the team store for Lunar New Year night at Rogers Arena.

“From T-shirts to hoodies, scarves, mini sticks, mugs, pins, you name it, we have got it. So every fan can get a piece of this year’s Lunar New Year,” said Moody, who added a portion of proceeds will be donated to local non-profits that focus on anti-Asian racism.

Combating a rising tide of Asian hate during COVID is what motivated Lai to sign on to design the Canucks Lunar New Year jerseys in 2022.

“I think I opens people’s eyes and hearts to the Asian community, and I think that’s one of the most important parts of this design, and why I’m so happy to be involved with Canucks on this year after year,” he said.

Lai’s previous Lunar New Year jerseys for the year of the tiger and the year of the rabbit were worn by the Canucks during pre-game warm up. But the league won’t allow teams to wear theme night jerseys on the ice anymore.

“I’m really thankful I got to see them the last couple of years wearing it, and of course I was sad there is the change. But one of the things we worked on in response to that was to look beyond the jersey,” said Lai. “That’s why I created a really special animated project with the Canucks.”

Lai is the executive producer of a hugely popular online animated series called Super Boomi.

“So we created this mini episode where Boomi basically has to recruit the all-star Canucks, we have Petey, Miller, Demko, Hughes and Boeser, and bring them all together to help him save Lunar New Year,” said Lai. The episode drops on Lunar New Year, Feb. 10.

Lai hopes his jersey, and the year of dragon, will give the already surging Canucks a bit of luck during their push for the playoffs.

“I really hope this design will help bolster what is already an amazing team and an amazing year,” he said. Top Stories

Stay Connected