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A phone call from his father helps ease Lonzo Ball's concern for his brother, who remains in China

Lonzo Ball finally got some firsthand word from China when his father, LaVar, called him Friday night.

LaVar Ball is in China with his wife, Tina, and two younger sons. The family’s middle son, LiAngelo, was arrested Tuesday and questioned by police on suspicion of shoplifting from a Louis Vuitton store in Hangzhou while with the UCLA basketball team.

“My dad did call me but didn’t leave me much information,” Lonzo Ball said. “He just said, ‘Be ready to play. We are handling it out here,’ so that’s a good sign.”

Ball spoke after the Lakers’ shootaround in Milwaukee. He has said he is trying to focus on basketball, and repeated that notion Saturday morning.

When asked whether the phone call from his father put his mind at ease, Ball said it did. Brother LiAngelo, a freshman at UCLA, has not been allowed to leave the luxury hotel in which the team stayed while in Hangzhou.

The Bruins beat Georgia Tech 63-60 in Shanghai on Friday night in the season opener. The Balls are staying with LiAngelo while he remains in Hangzhou.

“They are out there, so they are taking care of him,” Ball said of his family.

tania.ganguli@latimes.com

Follow Tania Ganguli on Twitter @taniaganguli

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