News about the move comes from anonymous sources who spoke to The New York Times‘ Brian Stelter, who’s writing a book about the morning newscasts. He says Willie Geist will serve as a backup to Matt Lauer on Today. But he’ll primarily be there to join Natalie Morales, Al Roker and Savannah Guthrie for the third hour of the broadcast. As a result, Geist will give up his 5:30 AM ET MSNBC show Way Too Early With Willie Geist. And he’ll also have less time for Morning Joe, where the NYT says Geist has served as the show’s “straight man.” Geist’s contract was due to expire at the end of September. He’s the son of CBS News correspondent Bill Geist and is repped by WME.
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