Matt Lauer has won the war for Ray Rice -- booking the disgraced NFL star to appear on the "Today" show for an exclusive sit-down interview during sweeps ... TMZ Sports has learned.
It's unclear if Ray's wife Janay Rice will participate in the interview.
We're told the interview is expected to air sometime between now and Nov. 26th.
It's a huge score for NBC ... especially since Rice and Janay have been radio silent with the media ever since we published the elevator footage showing Ray KOing Janay in an Atlantic City casino.
A source connected with Rice just contacted us and said Rice has made no commitment to sit-down with "Today" and will not do anything until after the arbitration decision on his suspension is made. The source says "Today" was really only interested in Janay, not Ray. Our NBC sources dispute that and say Rice is the prize. The Rice source says they will consider the interview but only after arbitration.