Naomi Osaka’s Boyfriend Cordae Is A Grammy-Nominated Rapper

The couple is expecting their first child in 2023 after nearly four years of dating.

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Who Is Naomi Osaka's Boyfriend Cordae? He's A Grammy Nominee
Tim Clayton/David Crotty/Patrick McMullan/Getty Images

Tennis star Naomi Osaka set very important boundaries in 2021. To protect her mental health, the four-time Grand Slam champion announced she would not be doing any interviews at the French Open. “I’m just not going to subject myself to people that doubt me,” she said at the time, which is a rule she follows in her personal life as well. Throughout this period of boundary-setting, the 25-year-old athlete has been dating rapper Cordae Amari Dunston, and the couple just hit a huge milestone in their nearly four-year relationship.

On Jan. 11, Osaka announced that she’s pregnant with her and Cordae’s first baby, revealing their exciting addition by sharing an ultrasound photo on Instagram. As a result, she will not return to tennis until the Australian Open in 2024. “I know that I have so much to look forward to in the future,” she wrote in an accompanying note. “One thing I’m looking forward to is for my kid to watch one of my matches and tell someone, ‘That’s my mom,’ haha.”

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Cordae has yet to comment on the pregnancy publicly, but if his public interactions with Osaka are any indication, he’ll be just as supportive as ever. The 25-year-old artist, previously known as YBN Cordae, has been one of her most ardent supporters. And while Osaka is a pro at keeping her cool on the court, the same cannot be said for Cordae, who has been seen passionately cheering on Osaka from the stands.

The two-time Grammy-nominated rapper told GQ that his love story with the Osaka, who is also one of the highest-paid female athletes, began when they exchanged numbers in 2019. Soon enough, they went on their first date to a Los Angeles Clippers game. But as they continued getting to know each other, they decided to keep things private. “We were dating for almost a year before people knew about us. So we kind of move very reclusively,” Cordae said. “We don’t really post intimate moments, because I feel as though they’re sacred. A relationship is really a sacred thing. Once you let outside influences get into it, it becomes less sacred.”

The couple’s privacy policy left fans of the tennis star with many questions about her beau. For instance, did he know that she was one of the world’s best tennis players when they first met? “I didn’t even know who she was,” the musician confessed to Ebro in the Morning in 2019. And in the pair’s interview with GQ, Cordae revealed that the only tennis stars he was familiar with prior to dating Naomi were Venus and Serena Williams. “It’s not my sport,” he admitted.

While the duo may have been on different pages about tennis, they have a lot in common — including their music taste. “He also introduces me to a lot of older music,” Osaka said. “Songs I remember my parents listening to. I’m not sure if he’s going to kill me for saying that.” Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, and Michael Jackson are among the many legendary artists they both enjoy.

Naomi Osaka and Cordae attend an NBA game in 2019 in Los Angeles.Allen Berezovsky/Getty Images

The couple has also been very vocal about their support of the Black Lives Matter movement. Cordae reportedly protested outside of Kentucky Attorney General Daniel Cameron’s home following Breonna Taylor’s death. The tennis star showed her support for the movement by wearing masks that featured the names of Black Americans killed by police. She also posted a heartfelt message on Instagram. “Before I am a, athlete, I am a Black woman,” she wrote. “I’m exhausted of having a new hashtag pop up every few days and I’m extremely tired of having this same conversation over and over again.”

Cordae wears a "defund the police" shirt at the 2020 US Open.Al Bello/Getty Images Sport

The tennis star is nothing if not transparent, and when she announced that she wouldn’t be playing at the French Open in May, Cordae proved that she has his support. “I think now the best thing for the tournament, the other players and my well-being is that I withdraw,” Osaka wrote in a lengthy social media post. When she revealed that she apologized to tournament officials, Cordae popped into the comments. “No need to apologize to ANYBODY!” he wrote.

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