Dailies | Fired Anchor A.J. Clemente Discusses ‘Gutwrenching’ Viral Video on ‘Today’ (Video)

Fired Anchor A.J. Clemente Discusses 'Gutwrenching' Viral Video on 'Today' (Video)

"Today" hosts Matt Lauer and Savantha Guthrie highlight the North Dakota free agent's resume skills before giving him "a second chance"

A.J. Clemente, the fired North Dakota anchorman who hails from the east coast, made it back to New York City on Wednesday morning to appear on "The Today Show." The West Virginia graduate discussed what he calls a "gutwrenching" on-air gaffe.

"When I first saw the clip, it was gutwrenching," he said. "I didn't even know I said it on camera before my news director walked in on third break."

Also read: A.J. Clemete, Fired Anchor, Visiting Letterman to Talk Disastrous First Day (Video)

After sympathetic "Today" hosts Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie aired the viral video of Clemente accidentally saying "f–king s–t" on air, the aspiring newscaster laid out all of the reasons he could think of as to why it happened.

"We actually came on 30 seconds early," Clemente explained. "The London marathon is my second story, there is literally three names I don't know how to pronounce at all."

He also cited "no cue, no countdown," as well as no earpiece and not enough training from his former KFYR-TV employers. Still, he said he completely understands why he was fired, but is hoping for a second chance.

And both Lauer and Guthrie are rooting for him to get it.

"We should mention you are a reporter, you can shoot, you can edit, and we know you have a way with words," Guthrie said. "So if anybody is watching, we think, A.J., a second chance would be a great thing for you."

But just in case no other stations want to take the risk, the "Today" hosts allowed him take the lead before the commercial break. Here's his second chance:

  • Telast

    Give him a second chance. And get professional.

  • Lolala

    With so many hard-working, aspiring reporters and anchors out there who can actually read news and don't have potty mouths, why should this goof get a second chance? There is NO EXCUSE for his language, or his inability to speak in complete sentences. He is an embarrassment to his university and should take up another line of work. This is another example of someone raised in a generation in which everyone gets a trophy just for playing, and people are rewarded for mediocrity — or worse.

  • Jim

    I heard AJ was hired. He's the new host of The Today Show. His first words will be, “Beep, Beep.”

  • jjsemp

    I don't understand all this talk about giving him a “second chance.” This young man is incoherent (“Yknow, yknow, yknow”), and his speaking and grammar skills are atrocious (“there is literally three names I don't know how to pronounce at all.”). He should never have been given a FIRST chance. When did intelligence, talent and skill stop being a prerequisite for getting and holding an on-air TV job?

  • Robert Moon

    I don't care about his profanity; I care about the fact that he is the single most inarticulate newsperson I have ever heard. How did he get hired in the first place?! His diction and presentation style are atrocious.