“On Friday, May 2nd, former Good Morning America colleagues Josh Elliott and Sam Champion will reunite for the first time live on air from The Kentucky Derby,” The Weather Channel boasted cheekily today. Upping the cheek, the channel said Elliott will join Champion at 9 AM ET from Churchill Downs live during its flagship morning show AMHQ With Sam Champion “for a trip down memory lane.” They’ll also talk Derby weather and cuisine.
NBC poached Elliott in March, ending an intense negotiation between ABC News and the GMA news anchor, in which Elliott, who had been making about $1.2 million in salary, turned down an offer to stay with the show for about $4 million, raising his asking price to $10 mil. NBC got a strong sports guy who’d previously worked at ESPN. Per terms of his exit, Elliott cannot appear on NBC’s Today show for six months. He was the second member of the No. 1 rated morning infotainment show’s ensemble team to depart for an NBCUniversal property. In December, NBCU successfully poached longtime GMA weatherman Champion, who is now a bigwig at Weather Channel.
The Weather Company is owned by a consortium made up of NBC Universal and the private equity firms The Blackstone Group and Bain Capital.