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Matt Lauer to Leave 'Today' Show at the End of 2012?

Charles Eshelman/FilmMagic(NEW YORK) -- One day after NBC was confronted with reports that Meredith Vieira will leave the Today show later this year, the network was forced Wednesday to address another rumor that her co-host, Matt Lauer, is also planning his departure from the morning program.

Entertainment Tonight is reporting that Lauer has told his bosses that he will say goodbye to the show when his contract expires on December 31, 2012.

A statement from the Today show to Entertainment Tonight downplays the report: "There seems to be an awful lot of speculation around news anchors these days, and it's not our practice to comment on any of it.  Matt Lauer has a long term contract with NBC News and Today."

Lauer became host of the Today show in 1997, replacing Bryant Gumbel.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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