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Matt Lauer

I'll Stay at 'Today' ...

If You Pay Me a Fortune

2/10/2012 5:30 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF

0209_matt_lauer_tmz_EX
Matt Lauer has softened his position about leaving "Today" in December at the end of his contract -- that is, if NBC antes up a record amount of money.

Sources connected to NBC tell TMZ ... Lauer was done with "Today" and wanted out -- but the word at the network is he will now re-sign if NBC ponies up way more than the $17 mil he's currently making.

We're told negotiations are now ongoing -- but if NBC agrees ... Lauer could score as much as $30 MILLION a year.

As for why the change of heart -- there are two schools of thought according to network sources. Some say Lauer changed his mind when network execs made it clear they were extremely interested in tapping Ryan Seacrest as Matt's replacement -- in other words, he got a little jealous.

But there's another school of thought -- that Lauer has wanted to re-sign all along and just played the "I'm leaving" card to score a bigger pay day.

As for whether Lauer is worth $30 mil ... to put it in context, "Today" makes roughly $450 million a year for the network ... more than any other show on NBC.

So we gotta ask ...

180 COMMENTS

No Avatar
61.

Jenn    

Matt Lauer and Nancy Snyderman are PHARMA WHORES. Treat medical news stories objectively!

801 days ago
62.

Ray    

but who would play where in the world is matt

801 days ago
63.

lily anne    

personally- matt loves matt- he loves women too- lol! seriously, bring on seacrest because the new show CBS is awesome and i have turned over- matt is boring! let him leave- good luck for him to get what he has there elsewhere too already! time to shake up today show- meredith leaving was a start- hopefully it will be bye bye matt time- look at the votes again please- get going for a better show ahead-

801 days ago
64.

tessa    

way too big for his britches, show him and all the other overpaid show people the door. there's a long line waiting to replace him for a fraction of the cost.

801 days ago
65.

char    

They're all overpaid including Ryan Seacrest. Does anyone still watch the Today Show?

801 days ago
66.

janet    

Matt Lauer is good at reading tele-prompters, knowing which camera to look into. If not written for him, he doesn't have a clue. Sitting on a couch, coffee cups, if that is $30 million a year, sign me up.

801 days ago
67.

faye    

He thinks he's worth 30 million... Like that Casey chick who thinks she's worth millions too.. Hey, maybe they can hook up and double the pot NBC.. Rolling in the deep... Get rid of him, it's a new year and he's so hum drum, ever since he lost his hair.. Or make him wear a toupee or a big hat, preferably one that will cover his face.

801 days ago
68.

Grace    

He is not worth what he is making now. Goodbye to Matt and bring in some new blood that will bring the show a fresh start that will take it into the future. Matt should have been gone long ago. He is repulsive.

801 days ago
69.

Linda    

Maybe not 30 mill but what were they paying Katie C. She seemed to always get more than the others. Also as an example using american Idol they wont pay Paula more but they sure did for Jennifer. So If you have a great employee put out as you will in the end anyway. How much does ryan seacrest get for Idol...my point exactly!

801 days ago
70.

Lori    

Matt Lauer is the reason I do not watch this show!

801 days ago
71.

Lynn J. Indiana    

With so many people STILL out of work and others that haven't received pay hikes in several years.....this is crazy. Why not be a MAN and take a decrease and spread that 30 mil to those that can't pay bills or feed their families. That job is NOT worth 30 million dollars, I don't care who is doing it. I just don't know of any job that should be paid a million......Oh wait Teachers..Firemen....Police...Soldiers...Nurses. Come on Matt you can't really think you are worth that much !

801 days ago
72.

boxerdogs    

Shouldn't this guy be considered part of the 1% and why aren't the occupiers at his house protesting???? Oh that's right, he's a Barack Obama supporter.

801 days ago
73.

Jay W.     

Walk away Douche Lauer... walk away.

801 days ago
74.

Butterfly    

I WANT MATT LAUER TO STAY!!! Should he decide to leave, his replacement is right under NBC's nose, Lester Holt! He is highly professional, easy to listen to and easy on the eyes. God forbid, if Ryan Seacrest is chosen, it is almost guaranteed he will haul the entire repulsive, trashy Kardashian clan including their nauseating mother, Kris Jenner. No matter what happens, it is Matt Lauer , or, Lester Holt, END OF DISCUSSION!!!

801 days ago
75.

mebrat24    

Call Regis, I hear he needs the money and he would do it for only 20 million.

801 days ago
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