Ted Koppel -- who left "Nightline" more than six years ago to strike out on an ambitious doc production initiative for the Discovery Channel -- is returning to broadcast TV as a contributor to "Rock Center with Brian Williams." The show bows Oct. 31.
The move had been expected, and others, including ABC News, had talked to Koppel about a return, But, for whatever set of reasons, Ted held back. No longer.
In the new role as special correspondent, he will be as a contributor, which means most likely only the occasional report. But for "Rock Center" -- NBC's first new prime time news magazine in years -- this qualifies as a real coup. Koppel's one of the great newsmen of the business -- who joined ABC in the early 1960s and launched one of its enduring triumphs during the Iranian hostage crisis.
"My goal has been to make ‘Rock Center’ the Cooperstown of our craft,” said Brian Williams. “Ted is a consensus Hall of Famer, joining the best team of men and women on the air today. While his place in the history of television journalism is already established, his work here is just beginning. This is the next chapter, and it’s an enormous honor to work with this giant and former competitor.”