Remaking a famous poster: How UK hockey kept a 20-year tradition alive

A UK Hockey player escorts Kindly Myers onto the ice to drop the first puck before the teams game against the Akron Zips on Friday, Sept. 7, 2018, at the Lexington Ice Center in Lexington, Kentucky. Photo by Jordan Prather | Staff

Rick Childress

Famous super models likely charge thousands to pose for a company’s promotional material. The UK club hockey team pays nothing.

Over the years, the hockey team has managed to get a number of models to pose— wearing a hockey jersey but not much else— for their promotional poster which advertises the team’s schedule. Apparently the models do it for free, and for the sake of tradition.

Kindly Myers, a model originally from Kentucky who has appeared in Maxim and Playboy and has more than one million Instagram followers, said she realized a childhood dream when she appeared on the 2018-19 UK club hockey poster, wearing the team’s black jersey while seated on a “freezing cold” hockey rink.

“This is something I have wanted to do ever since I was a little girl,” Myers told the Kernel via email, as her being at a shoot in Jamaica prevented her from doing a phone interview.

She said she wanted to join a tradition that is well-known locally.

In 1998, Ashley Judd, a UK alumna who was already a world-famous actress and model, kickstarted the tradition with a photoshoot for a poster that promoted the UK club hockey team, a seemingly obscure sport to most Kentuckians. The poster, being the first of its kind, became famous in Lexington, and inspired Myers to strike a similar pose two decades later.

“I am glad that people are comparing the two posters,” Myers wrote. “When posing for the poster I was trying to recreate the original while making it my own.”

Judd did that shoot 20 years ago for free, largely because she had a cousin on the hockey team at the time, UK hockey assistant coach Clay Pergram said. Myers, he added, “did it out of the kindness of her heart, kind of how Judd did.”

About a year ago, Pergram said he reached out to Myers on Twitter, asking her if she wanted to be on the poster. He said from there, convincing her to be on the poster was “easy money.”

“I was raised to be a Kentucky fan,” Myers said. “I definitely bleed blue.”

Pergram said the poster was shot in Nashville, where Myers and the photographer, Devin Williams, did all the work and sent the photos to UK hockey. The team put together the graphics and the calendar.

Myers said she was happy with how the poster turned out, and based on the reaction of social media and the team, the poster was largely well received.

“My girlfriend says I can’t comment on that,” Ryan Duffy, a sophomore defenseman, said of the poster.

Myers dropped the ceremonial first puck ahead of the team’s home opener on Friday, Sept. 7, and Jimmy Kasch, a senior forward, said ahead of time that he was going to be very excited to meet her at center ice.

“I’ll have my number written out on a sheet of paper for her,” Kasch said.

Max Boss, a senior defenseman, said none of the team’s current players have had a poster done for them before, as the last one poster came in 2013.

Pergram said the poster makes the team look even better, as having someone of Myers’ following on the poster can only boost the team’s renown. Plus, he said, the poster generates revenue for a club team that receives little to no backing from the university.

“She was super easy to work with, and very patient with us,” Pergram said of Myers. “It took us about a year to finally get it up, but I think it’s been pretty well received and hopefully it’ll get as popular as the Judd poster.”