Congrats are in order! Naomi Osaka is celebrating her first pregnancy, which she shared on Instagram on Jan. 11. Along with a photo of her ultrasound, Osaka wrote, “I know I have so much to look forward to in the future, one thing I’m looking forward to is for my kid to watch one of my matches and tell someone, ‘that’s my mom.’” Although she did not share the name of her baby’s other parent, Osaka has been publicly dating the rapper Cordae since 2019, and People and TMZ have identified him as the father.
Osaka, 25, and Cordae, 25, had their first date at a Los Angeles Clippers game in June 2019. However, according to the rapper, their connection goes back even further. In February 2021, he told GQ, “We were dating for almost a year before people knew about us. So we kind of move very reclusively. 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.”
It seems like they’ve stuck to that strategy. In her pregnancy announcement, Osaka didn’t mention Cordae — and he has yet to post about the baby on the way. But their silence doesn’t indicate a lack of support. When Osaka battled Victoria Azarenka during the 2020 US Open, her boyfriend was standing right in the crowd cheering her on. And when Osaka announced that she would not take part in press conferences ahead of the 2021 French Open, her boyfriend defended her. "No need to apologize to ANYBODY!" the “RNP” rapper wrote on her Instagram post.
During the interview for GQ’s February 2021 Modern Lovers issue, Cordae admitted he didn’t know how big of a deal Osaka was in the sports world. “It’s not my sport,” he said. “If you asked me about tennis, before being immersed in it because of Naomi, I could only give you Venus and Serena Williams, you know? Because they’re just a part of the culture.” As their relationship progressed and Cordae learned more about tennis, he taught Osaka more about his music as well. Now, when he finishes a song, he likes to let his girlfriend hear it first. “She has a good ear,” he added.
The “Have Mercy” rapper is a two-time Grammy nominee, and he’s best known for his debut solo album, The Lost Boy, which peaked at number six on Billboard's Top Rap Albums chart. He’s also a proud supporter of the Black Lives Matter movement, and that’s something Osaka can get behind. In September 2020, the athlete made headlines for wearing a face mask that paid tribute to Black Americans who were killed by police.
When asked by GQ how he knew Osaka was his “match,” Cordae reflected on everything they have in common. "I can't really be with someone who doesn't have any substance or doesn't act or think on the same frequency and wavelength as I do,” he said. “Like, you know, Naomi was born in Japan. So she has a very worldly perspective. My perspective has always been being a young Black man in America. But she thinks more worldly. I've only been traveling the world the last two years. We'd be recommending each other books and movies all the time. So, you know, just always feeding the brain."
It seems Osaka feels the same way, too. In August 2020, she gave him a sweet shoutout on Instagram for his 23rd birthday. "I always feel so lucky to be in your life and to be continuously learning from you,” Osaka wrote in the (sadly since-deleted) post. “I'm so grateful that I can talk to you about anything and ask for advice (cause you know I need all the help I can get lol)."
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