When NBC told him they wanted to end his new show, Leno told viewers Monday, he asked to be released from his contract.

“‘No, you’re still a valuable asset to this company,’ ” he said the network told him. His reply: “How valuable can I be? You fired me twice.”…

“Through all of this, Conan O’Brien has been a gentleman. He’s a good guy, I have no animosity toward him. This is all business,” Leno said. “You know, folks, if you don’t get the ratings, they take you off the air.”