False alarm! For a second, folks thought the disgraced Matt Lauer was returning to television just two years after his highly-publicized sexual harassment scandal, specifically on CNN. But Jeff Zucker, the network’s boss, quickly shut down the rumors to his worried staff.
“There is absolutely no truth at all in the reports that Matt is coming to CNN,” he wrote, according to Page Six.
The rumors especially felt believable considering Jeff used to be Matt’s boss on Today back in 1992 and they have remained friends all these years. And even when Matt was abruptly fired from the NBC series back in November 2017, they still kept it in touch.
That said, much of the CNN staff reportedly worried that Matt could actually be joining the team. “Some staff were starting to freak out that Matt Lauer was suddenly about to come back from the dead and show up at CNN’s shiny new Manhattan office at Hudson Yards. In many ways the Matt rumors seemed to make sense, ratings on CNN’s morning show and across prime time have been flagging, and perhaps Matt could be brought back to revive the numbers, and his own career at the same time,” the insider shared.
The source added: “The internal talk about Matt was that — if it turned out to be true — some senior female employees would refuse to work with him. There was palpable relief in the office after Jeff confirmed Matt isn’t happening.”