“This came from clearly a bad place, a bad urge inside of me,” Williams told Matt Lauer during the taped interview that aired Friday morning. “This was clearly ego-driven, the desire to better my role in a story I was already in.”
An extensive review by NBCUniversal into Williams' reporting in the field found that he made a number of inaccurate statements about his role and experiences in covering events. “It has been torture,” Williams told Lauer.
"Looking back, it has been absolutely necessary. I have discovered a lot of things. I have been listening to and watching what amounts to the black box recordings from my career. I've gone back through everything — basically 20 years of public utterances."
NBC announced Thursday that Lester Holt would take over as permanent anchor for the nightly news, and Williams will join MSNBC as an anchor of breaking news and special reports.
"I am a grateful person,'' Williams said. "I am fully aware of the second chance I have been given. I don't intend to squander it.”