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Michael Strahan Addresses LIVE! With Kelly and Michael Departure Amid Kelly Ripa's Absence

By / Published on Wednesday, 20 Apr 2016 13:32 PM / No Comments / 197 views

Kelly Ripa, Michael Strahan, LIVE with Kelly and Michael

Kelly Ripa, Michael Strahan, LIVE with Kelly and MichaelABC

Michael Strahan really wants his fans to know that he’s not going anywhere.

Quite literally, he’ll be leaving LIVE! With Kelly and Michael to work for Good Morning America full-time, but he’ll be staying on the same network, ABC. Strahan has appeared twice a week on the morning talk show host for about two years. The former NFL star addressed the news of his departure, which was announced Tuesday, on the show Wednesday morning while Ana Gasteyer co-hosted instead of Kelly Ripa.

“I’m leaving the show to go over to GMA full-time, which is going to happen in September. It is true,” he announced. “It’s is the same channel. I’m not going anywhere.”

He made light of his announcement, joking that some of the headlines he read about his career move were a tad macabre. “I was reading some of the stuff and it sounded like I died,” he said, laughing. “But I do want to say to all of our viewers out there…four years ago when I came here, I’m sure they were like, ‘They chose that guy with the big gap in his teeth?'”

MORE: What Michael Strahan’s departure really means

All jokes aside, Strahan gave an emotional thank you to the viewers. “You still continue to give us your eyeballs and watch this show…thank you, guys,” he said. “I couldn’t have asked for better fans at all. You guys have been absolutely amazing.”

The NFL correspondent also thanked all the staff of Live! With Kelly and Michael for a job well done over the past four years, but didn’t name anyone specifically. He did remind viewers, however, that he won’t be too far away if the show ever needs a fill in. “I’m always here and available to guest co-host if I ever get the call,” he said. “I’m not going anywhere.”

In the statement released Tuesday, Strahan said he was excited to join the GMA team on a more regular basis. “I look forward to continuing to work with the incredible team at GMA. It is an exciting opportunity to be able to bring unique stories and voices to the audience,” Strahan said in a statement. “My time with LIVE with Kelly and Michael has been transformative, and my departure will be bittersweet. Kelly has been an unbelievable partner, and I am so thankful to her and the entire team. I am extremely grateful for the amazing support I’ve received from all of the fans.”

PHOTOS: Kelly Ripa & Michael Strahan’s best Live! moments

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