Matt Lauer appears a handful of times in ‘Today’ 70th anniversary bash

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Disgraced former “Today” co-anchor Matt Lauer still managed to sneak in a few appearances during the show’s 70th anniversary retrospective Jan. 14, 2022.

Lauer was fired from NBC and “Today” in 2017 after multiple accusations of sexual misconduct came to light. He denies any wrongdoing and issued an apology.

However, Lauer is still a big part of the show’s history, so the show didn’t try to ignore him directly, though he only appeared about four times in a 12 minute package, according to a New York Post count, most notably in a clip from Sept. 11, 2001, coverage.

The show had said ahead of time that it wasn’t going to skirt the Lauer issue in an interview with TVNewser.

The scandal rocked NBC and the TV industry as a whole, triggering allegations that NBC knew about his misconduct and tried to cover up the story. Lauer had risen to superstar status at NBC, with a multimillion dollar contract. He reportedly yielded significant power within the company, largely thanks to his position as one of the main faces of the news division’s most profitable show.

Lauer was not, however, interviewed for the 70th anniversary package and has mostly laid low since he was fired. He has not appeared on NBC air, other than in archival footage, since then.

Lauer’s firing would eventually lead to the show appointing its first female anchor team — current co-hosts Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb. Guthrie had been co-anchoring beside Lauer before the scandal and Kotb co-hosted the show’s standalone fourth hour but also appeared during other blocks of the show, including filling in for Guthrie or Lauer.

Kotb was also next to Guthrie when the show broke the news that Lauer had been fired.