When Ann Curry was let go from her place as the “Today” show co-host, Matt Lauer shouldered a lot of the blame. There were rumors that he didn’t like working with her and that there was tension behind the scenes of the show. Now, in a new interview with Daily Beast, Lauer says that he didn’t like the way Curry’s exit was handled — and he didn’t agree with the decision to fire her in the first place.
“I don’t think the show and the network handled the transition well. You don’t have to be Einstein to know that,” says Lauer. “It clearly did not help us. We were seen as a family, and we didn’t handle a family matter well.”
Largely, the public sympathized with Curry, who had to continue hosting the show even as rumors swirled about her departure and plans to replace her with Savannah Guthrie were made public.
“When Matt was informed that we had made this decision, his good counsel was to go slow, to take care of Ann, and to do the right things,” says Steve Capus, who was NBC News president at the time. “He was quietly and publicly a supporter of Ann’s throughout the entire process. It is unfair that Matt has shouldered an undue amount of blame for a decision he disagreed with.”