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Ann Curry, Matt Lauer, Today Show

NBC/Peter Kramer

Matt Lauer has opened up about the departure of his former Today cohost Ann Curry.

"It was a hard time for everybody," Lauer told The Daily Beast nearly a year after Curry left and was replaced by Savannah Guthrie on the NBC morning program. "We were getting kicked around a lot. Some of it was self-inflicted and perhaps deserved."

What's more, Lauer believes, like many, that the transition from Curry to Guthrie was simply not handled properly.

"You don't have to be Einstein to know that," he said. "It clearly did not help us. We were seen as a family, and we didn't handle a family matter well."

Meanwhile, Today now finds itself taking a backseat in the ratings to rival Good Morning America.

"In some ways being No. 2 in the ratings is a real shot in the arm, a kick in the pants," Lauer noted. "It makes you hungrier...I don't think it's a bad thing to have a fire lit under your ass."