“TODAY” fans can look forward to seeing more of Hoda Kotb on the broadcast.
But not everyone was impressed.
“Sorry Hoda ur great with Kathylee but not as anchor. Was looking for a seasoned man – guess NBC doesn’t have one,” one person tweeted.
When Kotb’s old friend and colleague Al Roker noticed the statement, he put the tweeter on blast.
“Sounds like you want a steak, not an anchor,” the legendary weatherman replied.
Kotb’s critic then backtracked, insisting that their criticism had nothing to do with Kotb’s gender:
“It’s not a gender issue but rather personality. You all are in hype over the wrong issue,” she tweeted.
But good ol’ Al was having none of it. “I guess ‘seasoned man’ has nothing to do with gender. I misunderstood. Have a great day,” he replied.
According to NBC, Kotb’s contract — like Guthrie’s — will have the 53-year-old pulling in $7 million per year, reports Page Six.
While that number is nothing to scoff it, it pales in comparison to the $25 million-a-year paycheck that Lauer was cashing before his abrupt firing in November following a complaint of sexual misconduct against him.
According to a “TODAY” source, however, Kotb has no qualms about her contract — at least for now.
“Hoda isn’t complaining about the money. She has landed the big job she always dreamed of, and most definitely deserves,” said the insider to Page Six. “Plus, Matt’s salary reflected the long time he was on the show — 25 years. If things go well, Hoda could ask for more next time if she re-ups her contract. But the figures underline the huge wage disparity at NBC News.”
When news of Lauer’s firing made headlines months ago, Kotb was by Guthrie’s side to deliver the news to viewers.
“I’m sure we will be learning more details as the hours and days come. We promise we will share that with you. All we can say is we are heartbroken,” Guthrie said on a Nov. 29 broadcast. “We are heartbroken for Matt. He is my dear, dear friend and my partner and he is beloved by many people here. And, I am heartbroken for the brave colleague who came forward with her story and any women who have their own stories to tell.”
Kotb added, “This is a very tough morning for all of us.”
Looking back on that somber day, Guthrie said told PEOPLE that she is happy Kotb was by her side.
“That morning was so hard, but Hoda and I were in it together. We are family, and families do go through hard times, and when that happens in good families, you just get closer.”