Michael Strahan Continues to Compliment Kelly Ripa Upon Returning to 'Good Morning America'

by Jackie Willis 6:54 AM PDT, April 21, 2016
Playing Michael Strahan Continues to Compliment Kelly Ripa Upon Returning to 'Good Morning America'

Michael Strahan made his first appearance on Good Morning America on Thursday, since announcing that he's leaving Live! With Kelly and Michael in September to take on a full-time position on the morning show.

The former NFL pro joined Robin Roberts, Lara Spencer and George Stephanopoulos at the anchor table, and was all smiles as he received tips from his co-workers on how to "wake up early every day."

Strahan called the GMA staff his "second family," but was quick to compliment his Live! co-host, Kelly Ripa. "I’m going to miss everybody at Live!, sitting next to Kelly every day," he said. "I’ve been having a lot of fun on that show over the last four years and I’m very thankful to her because I’ve learned so much from her and [executive producer] Michael Gelman."

WATCH: Flashback! George Stephanopoulos Thought Michael Strahan Was a 'Natural' Addition to GMA

Continuing to express his gratitude for the daytime talk show, Strahan added, "I was so new to all of this that if it weren’t for her and for Michael Gelman and the staff there, they really boosted me up to make me look a lot better than I really am.”

The 44-year-old TV personality also stressed again to ABC viewers that he's not going anywhere. "We're on the same network," he said. "I’ll be up earlier now, but we’re on the same team, same family."

EXCLUSIVE: Anderson Cooper, Neil Patrick Harris in the Running to Replace Michael Strahan on 'Live!'

Ripa has yet to appear on Live! since Strahan's exit announcement. ET confirmed that Erin Andrews is filling in for the 45-year-old co-host in the interim, and started on Thursday.

WATCH: Source -- Kelly Ripa Threatens to Not Return to Live! Until Michael Strahan's Departure

During Wednesday's episode, Strahan announced to the Live! audience that he was leaving the program, and also praised Ripa. Check out his kind comments: