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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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mne4444276 March 31 2014 at 11:24 AM

I'm glad he's moving on.....never cared for him. He is way to "fond" of himself. The ratings weren't up because of him, they were up because of the chemistry of the entire staff. Robin and George are the two key components of the show, not Josh and Laura. I think he felt he was the reason the show was doing well, but he can come down to earth now.....it will continue to do really well without him!

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Denny March 31 2014 at 11:42 AM

The world is falling apart AOL....where is the REAL news? and forget HP....it's just an online grocery store rag!

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1 reply
nchscleve Denny March 31 2014 at 11:58 AM

Really, Denny? You count on "here" as being the real news?

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tucirish March 31 2014 at 11:26 AM

OK, first Sam & now Josh. Two vibrant personalities who made it fun to watch. Lara will still add zest but.... I think it's back to NBC for me.

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Toots March 31 2014 at 11:05 AM

I have been missing Sam, since he left and now they take away Josh :-( Ok, since Josh went to NBC, replace Matt Lauer with Josh and bring back Ann Curry.... I will start watching the Today show again, if they do that!

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carolynlu March 31 2014 at 12:13 PM

WILL BE SORRY TO SEE HIM LEAVE...........WISH HIM THE BEST IN HIS NEW VENTURE.......

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jkinnikinr March 31 2014 at 11:37 AM

I am terribly disappointed that Josh Elliott is leaving. There was such good interchange between all the cast there. I will miss his masculinity. George is wonderful, but he could stand another man on the program with him.

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Kristy March 31 2014 at 11:26 AM

Is he not even giving a farewell? His humor made the show every morning and now he's just gone with mearly a mention on the show today. Love Amy but I will miss Josh.

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Marie March 31 2014 at 1:06 PM

I liked GMA alot, but I have found myself moving to CBS morning show. If they want to boast the Today Show get rid of Matt Lauer.

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stagedoorencore March 31 2014 at 11:36 AM

Too much ! So sad. Time to look for a new show. I've been checking out CBS for a while. There was already too much costumes, cooking, silly competitions and games. My heart goes out to George who looks embarrassed most of the time anyway. The last NEWS person is gone.

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lbar1205 March 31 2014 at 11:32 AM

SAD !!!! ABC, Your loosing it !!

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