A day after the announcement that Michael Strahan was leaving “Live” to focus on “Good Morning America,” his co-host Kelly Ripa was absent.
Actress Ana Gasteyer filled in. Although a number of outlets have reported she was “blindsided” by the news and is spitting mad over her co-host’s imminent departure the show called Ripa’s absence simply “a day off.“
Strahan addressed the matter with Ripa’s temporary replacement.
“I’ve been in the news lately,” he said. “It’s been in the news that I’m leaving the show.”
The audience groaned, but Strahan bucked them up.
“I was reading some stuff and it was like I died. It’s not a eulogy, people!” he said. “For everybody who’s come through here in the live audience over the course of the last four years, thank you, guys. I can’t ask for better fans. I’ve worked with an incredible staff here. I’m always available to guest co-host if I get a call because I consider myself a part of this family forever.”
He saluted Ripa.
“Kelly welcomed me here,” he said. “I’ve learned so much from her. Kelly, I thank you. I love you..I’m not gonna cry on TV!”
Watch his statement here: