Brian Williams Speaks to Matt Lauer About Leaving NBC Nightly News

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In his first interview since being suspended from the NBC Nightly News, Brian Williams apologized for making inaccurate statements about his experiences in the field and said the last few months have been "torture."

"I said things that weren't true," Williams told TODAY's Matt Lauer in an exclusive interview.

"Looking back, it had to have been ego that made me think I had to be sharper, funnier, quicker than anybody else, [to] put myself closer to the action, having been at the action in the beginning," he said. "I own this and I own up to this."

NBC announced on Thursday that Williams would step down from the NBC Nightly News and, in mid-August, become an anchor of breaking news and special reports on MSNBC.

Lester Holt will become the permanent anchor of the Nightly News.

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