The “Today” show needs all the firepower it can muster to blunt the return of Robin Roberts on “Good Morning America” during the all-important February sweeps — but NBC”s biggest weapon is missing from its arsenal — one Matt Lauer.
Sources connected with the network tell our sources … Lauer is taking the week off because he wants to spend time with his kids, who are off from school.
It”s unheard of for a network anchor to bail during sweeps — when ratings translate into advertising dollars. As far as we can tell, no anchor on “Today” has ever done it.
We”re hearing 2 conflicting stories as to why Lauer is MIA from “Today”:
1. NBC knows they”re going to get their asses kicked with Roberts” return, and Today without Lauer is a good excuse.
2. Matt just doesn”t care anymore.