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Juan Ignacio Sánchez
Nickname Pepe
Position Point guard
Height 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m)
Weight 195 lb (88 kg)
League ACB
Team Free Agent
Born May 8, 1977 (1977-05-08) (age 32)
Bahía Blanca, Argentina
Nationality Argentine / Spanish
College Temple
Draft Undrafted
Pro career 2000–present
Former teams Philadelphia 76ers (2000–01)
Atlanta Hawks (2001)
Panathinaikos (2001–02)
Detroit Pistons (2002–03)
Etosa Alicante (2003–04)
Unicaja Málaga (2004–07)
AXA FC Barcelona (2007–08)
Real Madrid (2008–09)

Juan Ignacio Sánchez Brown, also known as Pepe Sánchez (born May 8, 1977 in Bahía Blanca) is an Argentine professional basketball player. He is a point guard. He was part of Argentina's 2004 Olympic champion team. Pepe Sánchez (1.93 metres, 6 feet 4 inches tall) was the first Argentine to play in the NBA, though he only played three seasons, with the Atlanta Hawks (5 games) Philadelphia 76ers (24 games), Detroit Pistons (9 games) and the Golden State Warriors, averaging only 5 minutes per game.


Pro career


Early years

At age 12, he began playing for the youth team of Club Bahiense del Norte, together with future NBA star Emanuel Ginóbili. At age 17 he moved to Deportivo Roca for the 1994/95 season of the Argentine League, where he played point guard. The following year, he accepted a scholarship offer from Temple University in Philadelphia, but stayed in Argentina during the 1995/96 season, playing for Estudiantes de Bahía Blanca.

After his participation in the 1996 Youth Panamerican Tournament in Puerto Rico, where he represented Argentina's national basketball team, he moved to Philadelphia where he played for the Temple Owls college team for 4 years under Hall of Fame coach John Chaney, and finished his career as the #2 player in the NCAA in steals. As a junior, the crafty point guard guided the Owls to an appearance in the Elite Eight, where they fell to Duke. Despite averaging only 5.6 points per game as a senior, he was named a Third Team All-American by the Associated Press. He earned a degree in history at Temple in 2000.


Pepe Sánchez warming up with AXA FC Barcelona

In Europe, Sánchez won the Euroleague championship in the Euroleague 2001-02 season while playing with the Greek league club Panathinaikos, and in the Spanish League with Etosa Alicante. He transferred to Spanish Unicaja Málaga in 2004, with whom he won the 2005/06 ACB League; Unicaja's first Spanish League title. After three years at Unicaja, he left as a free agent when his contract expired at the end of the 2006-07 season.[1] On August 13, 2007, he signed with FC Barcelona.[2]

In July 2008, he signed with Real Madrid[3], but he was released in April 2009.[4]

Since he also possesses Spanish citizenship, his inclusion on the roster of any Spanish team does not count towards the foreign player intake limit allowed to teams in that country, or to teams anywhere in the European Union (see Bosman ruling for the reason).


Argentine national team

Olympic medal record
Competitor for  Argentina
Men's basketball
Gold 2004 Athens National team
World Championships
Silver 2002 USA National team

Sánchez was first called up to the Argentine senior national team in 1998. With Argentina, he played at the World Championships at both the 1998 FIBA World Championship and the 2002 FIBA World Championship (where he won the silver medal), the South American Championship 1999 (where he won the silver medal), and at the 2004 Olympic Basketball Tournament (where he won the gold medal).

Sánchez's performance at the 2006 FIBA World Basketball Championship was quite satisfactory, with the Argentine press choosing him as the most outstanding player in the team.[5]

Notes and references

External links


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