Arizona wing Pelle Larsson announces return for 2023-24 season
Arizona guard Pelle Larsson is coming back next season.
The 6-foot-5 wing from Sweden announced on his Instagram page Tuesday that he will return for the 2023-24 campaign, what will be his third season with the Wildcats. Larsson appeared in all 35 games last year, making 18 starts and setting new career highs across the board.
“Your job isn’t done until the job is done,” he wrote on social media. He also included a hashtag with a certain topical quote from The Wolf of Wall Street.
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Larsson declared for the NBA Draft in late April but kept his options open for a return. The expectation throughout the process was that Larsson would make his way back to Tucson. He received feedback from NBA teams, but didn’t participate in any camps or combines.
Last season, Larsson averaged 9.9 points to go with 4.3 rebounds and 3.1 assists — all career-bests. He shot 47.2% from the floor and 35.6% from 3.
As a sophomore during the 2021-22 campaign, Larsson was named the Pac-12’s Sixth Man of the Year for averaging 7.2 points, 3.4 boards, and 1.8 assists a game off the bench.
Heading into last season, there appeared an opportunity for someone on the wing to step into the sizeable hole left by Bennedict Mathurin.
That never quite happened. Arizona got decent enough play from its guards and big man Azuolas Tubelis played like a Player of the Year candidate — albeit in different ways from Mathurin — and the Wildcats won the Pac-12 Tournament. But lacking that reliable force who could take over a game hurt the UA come NCAA Tournament time.
Larsson scored just 2 points on 1-of-3 shooting in 21 minutes in Arizona’s opening-round loss to Princeton last March.
Lloyd is doing a bit of roster reconfiguring this offseason in hopes of building off his success the first two years, and even if Larsson might not be tasked with handling a larger offensive load, he’ll no doubt be an important piece of what Lloyd is building.