Bob Costas arrived in Sochi, Russia earlier this month for his eighth Olympic Games (winter and summer) in a row as the host of NBC’s primetime coverage. But an eye infection he sustained upon arrival has gotten increasingly worse, and Costas is going to take some much-needed rest.
NBC announced on “Today” Tuesday (Feb. 11) that anchor Matt Lauer will take over for Costas, with Costas keeping his usual good spirits: “Reluctantly, I was trying to throw a complete game here, but I think we’re going to have to go to the bullpen, and I don’t know if you’re aware of this or not, but you’re Mariano Rivera, at least tonight,” Costas tells Lauer live over the phone.
Lauer adds, “I just feel bad for him. He looks forward to these Games for so long and he’s the best that’s ever done it.If he could be in that seat, he’d be in that seat.”
NBC Sports adds on Twitter that with Lauer hosting primetime coverage, it’s the first time since 1998 that someone other than Costas has hosted an Olympic primetime show on NBC. His streak stood at 157 shows.
Costas has been good-natured about his eye infection, addressing it right at the start of his first primetime Olympics broadcast back on Feb. 6.
Get well soon, Bob.