Special day for MU team doctor Kane

Sunday, February 13, 2005 | 12:00 a.m. CST; updated 2:57 p.m. CDT, Sunday, July 13, 2008

Just call him Dr. Dad.

For Missouri women’s basketball team doctor Steven Kane, every home game is “Take Your Daughter to Work Day.” Kane and his 13-year-old daughter Lauren are some of the team’s most dedicated fans.

Saturday was Father/Daughter Day at the Missouri women’s basketball game against Texas A&M. Every father who brought his daughter to the game received $2 admission for himself and his daughter.

“I think it’s real important for fathers to be involved in their children’s lives,” Steven Kane said. “Whenever there’s anything I can take one of my daughters to, I do it.”

Steven Kane said Lauren can learn a lot by watching the Missouri women’s team.

“She watches them play, sees their hard work in going for every ball, and hopefully their sportsmanship,” Kane said.

He said he sees athletics as a unique opportunity to teach children about how to handle success and failure.

Sports are a huge part of the Kanes’ lives. Steven Kane played basketball in junior college and has worked in sports medicine at four universities since. Lauren is an avid tennis player who is ranked among the top girls her age in mid-Missouri. The pair had just gotten back from a tennis match at MU’s Green Tennis Center.

“I was up 4-0 tonight,” Lauren said.

“She beats me now; I used to beat her so bad but I don’t anymore,” Steven Kane said.

Despite losing to his daughter, Kane recognizes the importance of sports in his relationship her.

“Athletics give us a chance and a reason to be together,” Kane said. “Every time we’re going to and from a tennis tournament, or going to a basketball game, it’s a chance to talk.”

“It’s bonding time,” Lauren said.

But sports aren’t the only things that bring Steven and Lauren Kane together. The two even share a love for dissection.

While Steven Kane was working at the University of Texas-Galveston, Lauren used to go to the anatomy lab with him and help inspect cadavers.

“I want to be a veterinarian when I grow up,” Lauren said. “Or maybe a professional tennis player.”

Steven Kane said Lauren is a very serious student who used to wake up at 5:30 in the morning to study.

“I changed it to 6 now,” Lauren said.

Steven Kane shares Lauren’s love for knowledge. He came to MU to do orthopedic research and speaks throughout the country about sports medicine. Kane also works as an orthopedic surgeon at University Hospital.

Yet even while consumed by knee surgeries, Steven Kane values spending time with Lauren.

“In between surgeries, I’ll go out in the waiting room and do math with her,” Kane said.

The only math Lauren and Steven Kane did during the basketball game was trying to evenly divide their popcorn and nachos. And as the two finished their popcorn (with Lauren complaining that her dad had taken too much), the game clock ticked down to zero.

The basketball game was over, but the two said they would be back on Wednesday.

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