The couple has been quietly dating for over two years.
Naomi Osaka is all boo’d up! Fans no longer have to wonder who Naomi Osaka is dating, because the Grand Slam singles champion has made her relationship status very clear. Osaka is currently romancing rapper Cordae, and their relationship began all the way back in June 2019, when they had their first date at a Los Angeles Clippers game. After that fateful first date, Osaka and Cordae knew their relationship was something they wanted to pursue, and though they kept their romance on the DL for a while, the two are finally making their love known.
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 showed his support. "No need to apologize to ANYBODY!" the “RNP” rapper wrote on her Instagram post. Now, as the Summer 2021 Olympics draws near, Osaka can likely count on Cordae to give her all the support she needs.
Her agent told The New York Times that she’s “excited” to compete at the Olympics in Tokyo, Japan, and I know that she must be even more excited to have her beau by her side. And though the rapper is now his girlfriend’s biggest fan, he didn’t even know who Osaka was when they had their first date two years earlier.
During a February 2021 interview with the couple for GQ’s 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 that 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 that 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 shout-out 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)."
It’s clear to me these two were meant to be, and I can’t wait to watch Cordae cheer on his girlfriend in the 2021 Olympics.