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ABC's Josh Elliott leaving show for NBC Sports

ABC's Josh Elliott Leaving Show for NBC Sports

By David Bauder

NEW YORK (AP) -- ABC's top-rated "Good Morning America" has suffered its second personnel defection in four months, with news anchor Josh Elliott telling the network on Sunday that he's leaving for a job at NBC Sports.

ABC News President Ben Sherwood moved quickly to replace him, appointing Amy Robach as the "Good Morning America" news anchor.

Elliott follows former "GMA" weather forecaster Sam Champion out the door. Champion joined the NBC Universal-owned The Weather Channel, where he began a morning show of his own earlier this month.

Now that it is No. 1 in the morning, ABC has been involved in delicate negotiations to keep intact the team that got it there. Roberts recently signed a new contract to stay at "GMA," and co-host Lara Spencer finalized a new deal last week. Co-anchor George Stephanopoulos and new weather forecaster Ginger Zee also are part of the show's cast.

ABC took the top spot from NBC's "Today" show two years ago. The addition of Elliott and Spencer was a key move in the show's ascendancy, with the chemistry of ABC's morning team a major selling point when "Today" was hurt by the bad vibes surrounding Ann Curry's departure in 2012.

At NBC, Elliott will work on Sunday night football, the Olympics, horse racing and other events, spokesman Greg Hughes said. A formal announcement is expected later this week. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Sherwood said, "As many of you know, we have been negotiating with Josh these past several months. In good faith, we worked hard to close a significant gap between our generous offer and his expectations. In the end, Josh felt he deserved a different deal and so he chose a new path,"

Elliott did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

No role has been set for Elliott in NBC's news department. But restoring the "Today" show to its former luster is a top priority at Comcast Corp.-owned NBC, and weakening its chief competition by poaching Elliott may be part of that strategy. Another ABC News personality, "Nightline" host Cynthia McFadden, also accepted a job at NBC last week.

Robach, who used to work at NBC, is familiar to ABC's morning audience since she filled in for Roberts after the host underwent a bone marrow transplant. Robach, who has been battling breast cancer, was assigned by ABC to cover the Winter Olympics in Sochi.

"Amy will be a fierce and formidable full-time addition to our GMA team," Sherwood said in a memo to ABC News staff on Sunday.

Morning television is the most lucrative time of day for broadcast network news divisions, increasing the importance of personnel moves at their shows.

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vlh4361 March 31 2014 at 9:33 AM

I like Josh too, but you go for the money. I watch GMA for the news. Once they get past that and the silliness starts I turn to CNN. Used to watch Morning Joe but I got tired of their thinly veiled approval of Christie and the other GOP crazies.

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jglalone March 31 2014 at 9:55 AM

I am sorry to see Josh go, because what made the show interesting enough to beat out CBS (NBC with Matt Lauer...never...not since I saw him treat people he didn't agree with in the most uncivil manner years ago...egotistical sod!!!!) was the chemistry between Josh and Lara...which spilled over to the others. George and Robin are tolerable, but beige and boring.

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Sharyn March 31 2014 at 6:59 PM

I felt like the people on the Today show were like part of the family. I was able to transition from Katie to Meredith to Ann. The day they dumped Ann Curry was the last day I watched the show. It took a while to get used to GMA, but now watch it every morning. I was sorry to see Sam go. And will really miss Josh! But I think I am with GMA to stay. I will never go back to the Today show.

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1 reply
Joan Sharyn March 31 2014 at 7:28 PM

Agree, ugh, the thought of seeing Lauer again! I watch GMA and occasionally switch over to CBS.

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lmw8852 March 31 2014 at 1:31 PM

I do agree with Sandy & Jmdyt we do need a well balanced show there is more to know than just entertainment & HOOOS HOOO?!

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fc7542 March 31 2014 at 10:03 AM

First Sam and now Josh. Who will NBC take next in hopes of improving their ratings? Morning shows use to be more news but now they are more entertainment than news. Lets hope ABC/GMA keeps the rest of the talent. Have been a viewer of GMA for about 20 years but if anyone else leaves I may have to find other morning shows to watch.

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1 reply
cometothetable fc7542 March 31 2014 at 10:16 AM

Agree.....there's more entertainment than news on the morning shows these days. Unless there's some new "catastrophic event" going on...the shows are full of song and dance routines...blah, blah, blah. I think Sam and Josh just wanted something they could sink their teeth into. Unless the mainstream morning shows quit the entertainment business and get back to "NEWS" as their primary objective, they're all gonna be nothing more than A.M. segments of Entertainment Tonight

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LISE March 31 2014 at 10:05 AM

Great news. He was the one I could barely stand because he's so full of himself. I love Amy Robach.

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qltngrandma March 31 2014 at 6:41 PM

CAN NOT WAIT FOR HIM TO LEAVE !!!! :) :) :) Has anyone looked him up on google. What an arrogant Ass. His marriage lasted a very short time because his wife of less than a year, in fact I think it was weeks or months because he was caught in bed with another woman. According to an article he slept with most interns when he ws I think it was CNN. Look him up yourself about his divoece. I couldn't stand watching him look at women on the show. Go George. What a kind, modest, caring face. Again Josh don't let the door hit you in the butt !! :)

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5 replies
irisheyes117 March 31 2014 at 6:32 PM

I like cbs in the morning

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Kay March 31 2014 at 10:07 AM

I always enjoyed watching Josh but with his very large ego I could see him not agreeing on anything ABC offered. Really sorry to see him go as they need that male person on the show. I hope that they can find another male figure to put in the make-up of the show. I was so sad when Sam Champion left, he and Josh really made a great team. It seemed as if they were always teasing each other some how. George is good also but they need more than just one man on the show for sure! Good luck to you Josh.

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hark4109 March 31 2014 at 10:10 AM

Amy Robach is the only reason I ever watch ABC's GMA. Josh was a great addition when he came on board. George is stagnant and Robin not the best (I am happy for her that she is doing well). Ginger is refreshing But Amy is the greatest. We pray that she recovers completely from her battle with cancer.

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