“I swear, we had him the entire trip. Safe and sound. In perfect condition. Then we get to customs and all of a sudden he’s gone,” said Mark Lazarus, chairman of NBC Sports. “We had filled out all the paperwork declaring him and everything. We need him back.”
While Sochi airport officials have yet to give a statement, it’s easy to see how security or customs may have misplaced Costas, given his miniature size.
“We understand he’s small and blends in with the crowd, but that’s why we always tie a red nylon rope around his suit, so we can easily spot him. And still, he’s missing,” continued Lazarus. “And lost-and-found doesn’t seem to have him either. I’m starting to get worried. It would be easy for someone to step on him.”
Costas, NBC’s prime-time host for the last nine Olympic games would be hard to replace and NBC reportedly failed to bring a backup.
“We thought about packing a Matt Lauer, but we figured, why? We’ve never misplaced Bob before and had no real reason to think this would be the first trip he went missing,” explained Lazarus. “And also, who wants to pay the extra carry-on fee?”
With the Olympic games starting on Thursday, NBC is running out of time to recover Costas or find a new replacement.
UPDATE: A Delta Airlines flight attendant has found Costas still stowed away in the overhead bin from his arriving flight. NBC Universal and Mr. Lazarus have apologized for the accusations.
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