Juan Lebrón Chincoa, better known as “The Wolf”, was born on January 30, 1995 in El Puerto De Santa María, Andalusia (Spain). At 27 years old and 1.85 m tall, Lebrón is still a fairly young player with a long career ahead of him in padel.
Start of their career
From the age of 7 he began to enjoy this sport after seeing his father play periodically. He got off to a good start in his junior career after winning the Spanish Junior Championship several times and also playing in the Junior World Cup. It was at the age of 17 when he started his career as a professional Padel player.
In 2016, he began playing with Gabi Reca and climbed the WORLD PADEL TOUR rankings to the top 30. The following year, he became Marcello Jardim’s partner, but ended the season with Adrián Allemandi. It was a year of good results that led him to be among the 19 best in the world ranking. Subsequently, Juan Cruz Belluati joined Lebrón for the 2018 season and the final results were clear.
In October of the same year until the end of the season, Juan Martín Díaz was his new partner. It didn’t last long when “El Lobo” teamed up with Paquito Navarro for the entire 2019 season, becoming number one in the world after the semi-finals in São Paulo, being the first Spanish player to reach that ranking.
In 2019 he won a total of 5 tournaments with Paquito and then Alé Galán joined for the 2020 season, forming a young and powerful team that has challenged the traditional ways in which padel was played.
Changed the game
Juan Lebrón is simply the best smash in the history of Padel. A really strong statement, and more so considering that he is still young. But we have never seen a smash so powerful and technically perfect that the padel community will focus on their game.
He is a player who can move so quickly anywhere on the court that some joke that Lebrón can finish off the scoreboard as soon as the rival throws the ball.
Strong technically, physically and tactically, “El Lobo” changed the way of playing Padel. The shorter points and the fast matches with a high rhythm contrast with the definition that padel is an endurance sport.
His style of play has made us ask ourselves questions that almost no one knows how to answer at the moment. For example; Should the World Padel Tour change the conditions of the court or the pressure of the ball to avoid such a drastic change to the style of play we were used to?
Smash: Anywhere on the court, with almost any defensive lobby, Lebrón can position himself to smash him. He’s capable of doing everything, smash hard or spin, and decide exactly where the ball should end up. It is not very difficult to imagine since “the wolf” has total control over all the high balls on his side of the court.
Movements: Lebrón usually defends with very small open position movements. He takes big steps diagonally and covers most of his side with a maximum of 3 steps. This means that it does not open spaces for the ball to be played. He can also volley behind the service line and switch to attacking volleys in no time. In attacking position, he usually takes big steps to launch volleys that cover his entire side of the court.
High speed: “The Wolf” is at his best when the game flows fast and with high intensity, combining his athletic skills with aerial presence and command. He can even hit a series of powerful volleys and immediately break the rhythm of the game with perfect dribbles.
Defensive Shooting Versatility: He’s an incredible aerial player when he’s ready for the shot. But during the 2020 season, we have seen Federico Chingotto and Fernando Bela pick up a lot of starting points on the Lebrón side, opening the sidewall of a false post to a Chiquita, this is how these opponents manage to penetrate their side.
Mental Stability: It is very emotional. If a wily opponent knows how to take you into a psychological game, Lebrón doesn’t usually take it very well and loses focus very quickly. He is still young and more experienced players can take advantage of his inexperience and create a turning point during a match.
Is he invincible? Almost
Let’s forget that he is a young player and can play padel for at least another 10 years. When the game flows by its standards, it’s simply the best at the moment. But smarter opponents can explore their little weaknesses, and we’ve even seen some interesting playsets that have managed to prevent “The Wolf” from developing his playstyle naturally.
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