Al Roker is speaking out about former Today co-star Matt Lauer’s firing for sexual misconduct in the workplace last year, revealing his one wish for the disgraced anchor after he was let go by NBC News back in November following multiple allegations of inappropriate behavior.
Speaking about his former co-worker and friend this week, Al opened up to Entertainment Tonight about what he wishes for Lauer as well as speaking out about NBC’s decision to have Hoda Kotb replace the anchor.
Confirming that he has been in touch with Matt since he was fired last year, Al didn’t reveal exactly what they said during their exchange, but he did share a classy message when asked about the anchor.
“We wish nothing but the best for him and his family,” Roker told the outlet of his fired friend, adding that he hopes Lauer and his family members all “get the support and the help that they need.”
Al also opened up to Entertainment Tonight about what things have been like on the popular morning show since Lauer was fired. Two weeks after his dismissal, it was officially confirmed by NBC that Hoda Kotb – who had been temporarily filling in for Matt since he was fired – had been promoted to the anchor role alongside Savannah Guthrie on a permanent basis.
“It’s one of those things where it’s just completely natural,” Al said at the Hallmark Channel and Hallmark Movies & Mysteries winter Television Critics Association red carpet on January 13.
Roker then added that having Hoda slip into Matt’s chair has been a “seamless” transition, not only for her but for everyone who works on the morning show, which airs live daily from New York City.
“Hoda’s been there and everybody loves Hoda so it’s been seamless,” he added of Kotb taking on her main anchor role.
Roker’s sweet praise for Kotb comes shortly after the weatherman defended the mom of one on social media after a Twitter troll told him that they wanted a man to have taken over the vacant seat left by Lauer.
After Al praised Hoda on the social media site in a heartfelt message on January 2 shortly after it was officially confirmed that she would be Savannah’s full-time co-anchor, one disgruntled viewer hit back in response to his tweet, “Sorry Hoda [you’re] great with [Kathie Lee Gifford] but not as anchor.”
They then continued that they were “looking for a seasoned man” to replace Lauer on the popular morning show and added, “Guess NBC doesn’t have one.”
That’s when Roker came to Kotb’s defense with a tweet that’s since gone viral with more than 29,000 likes.
Al hit back at the fan who called for a male anchor to join the NBC show in Matt’s place on the 280-character site, responding, “Sounds like you want a steak, not an anchor.”