MOSCOW, September 21 (R-Sport) – It was the ultimate Hail Mary play and, as many expected, it failed: US sports star Tim Tebow is not coming to play American football in Russia, the owner of the Moscow club that tried to sign him told R-Sport on Saturday.
The Moscow Black Storm and its owner Mikhail Zaltsman had offered Tebow, who is not currently contracted to any team, $1 million to play two games for the team in what would have been an unprecedented move for a player who is trying to keep alive his dream of being a US National Football League (NFL) quarterback.
“Unfortunately agents of Tim Tebow turn down our proposal,” Zaltsman said in e-mailed comments. “I hope that its Tebow's agents’ fault that the contract wasn't signed and Tim couldn't do anything about it.”
He added: “If it was his decision, it's very upsetting. And in this case we don't want him in our team anyway.”
“We are looking for the people who pursue their dreams, not the ones who talk about it.”
Tebow’s agents were only prepared to allow him to come to Moscow as a motivational speaker and “tell Russian fans about his dream to play football and about his suffering while he's not playing,” Zaltsman said. The Russian businessman earlier claimed that Tebow had shown serious interest in his offer.
The 18-team American Football Championship of Russia is a largely amateur competition with a smattering of professional players, largely former competitors in college football and non-NFL leagues.
The Jacksonville Jaguars NFL team is reportedly interested in Tebow, although a fan rally to campaign for his signing Monday drew only around a dozen people to Jacksonville’s stadium.