His unexpected appearance on the program comes days after the two-time Gold Logie winner said on KIIS FM's Kyle and Jackie O Show that he has "no plans" to return to the show.
"There's no chance," the 44-year-old said. "No one has asked me to go back to the Today show. I have been enjoying myself doing a bit of 60 Minutes and This Time Next Year. It's a great combination and I have been able to rest a bit which is good."
Last month, the father-of-three opened up about his shock Today show axing, admitting he was "struggling towards the end of last year".
Speaking at Channel Nine's Gold Logie recovery brunch in July, the former breakfast show co-host— who worked alongside Lisa Wilkinson for more than a decade— candidly revealed he was having a tough time when he was dumped from the program in December while on his honeymoon with his shoe-designer wife, Jasmine Yarbrough.
"It’s been about six months since I was on the telly, and I needed to have a rest. Towards the end of last year, I was cooked,” Karl began. “It had taken its toll, a lot of the attention — all the unwarranted attention I thought, and you can’t control any of that, I’m not going to complain too much about that, but what it meant was that in a work capacity I don’t believe for a second I was at my best. I think I was struggling towards the end of last year.”
WATCH: Karl Stefanovic on annoying Cass at end of marriage "I didn't care"
While his sensational exit came as a shock to thousands of Australian viewers, the beloved Nine Network presenter said he knew the change was imminent and necessary.
“So it wasn’t a great surprise to me — in fact, it was a relief in many ways — that I was taken off the Today show. Because I just wasn’t at my best and you can’t be doing that show unless you’re at the top of your game,” he said. “You’ve got to be sharp, you’ve got to be witty, you’ve got to be funny. You’ve got to see the angles, and to be honest, at the end of last year I wasn’t seeing much.”
After his final segment aired, Karl said not having to wake at 3.30am and read the news all while trying to be "funny and witty" helped him "see things a lot clearer". Since his lengthy television hiatus, the popular Australian journalist revealed his headspace has improved and his marriage has been more "wonderful" now they're able to "breathe without having too many paparazzi in the shower with us".
“It allowed me to rest and think about life in a much clearer way and to come back and go ‘OK, when I do come back, I’ve got to make sure I’m OK’ and I think for a while there, I wasn’t sure if I was, to be honest,” said Stefanovic, who was married to Cassandra Thorburn before meeting Jasmine and tieing the knot in Mexico. "It has eased off, which was the whole point of everything (Today axing),” he continued.“ (I’m) just breathing. Taking life in."
While the former Nine newsreaders refuses to return to his old gig, he recently announced he will be hosting the second season of the network's popular series, This Time Next Year.
“I’m really proud and excited to be hosting series two of This Time Next Year,” Stefanovic said in an official Channel Nine statement to Yahoo. “I’ve met some truly inspiring Australians who will warm the hearts of viewers by pledging to reach huge personal goals in just one year."
Viewers watching the series will witness people from across Australia go through life-changing experiences, from finding love to doing the seemingly impossible.
“We have a whole new group of contributors as diverse as a 101-year-old woman who wants to learn to fly, a wheelchair-bound mum who dreams of running in the backyard with her five-year-old son, and a woman who wants to medically transition to being a man,” he explained. “This Time Next Year is an absolute joy to work on, and I’m not going to lie, I shed a tear or two," he said.