A sporty love story! JJ Watt and Kealia Ohai Watt’s romance was founded on their shared passion for athletics.
The twosome kept their relationship low-key when they started dating in early 2016. The sports stars met through Watt’s former Houston Texans teammate Brian Cushing, who is married to Ohai Watt’s sister, Megan Cushing.
Speculation of the pair’s connection began after Watt was caught sporting the Chicago Red Stars player’s jersey number — No. 7 — during a press conference. Ohai Watt confirmed her romance with the football player during an October 2016 episode of the “2 Up Front” podcast.
“The rumors are true. We are dating,” she revealed at the time. “I’ve known JJ for a really long time, and we’ve always been great friends.”
The professional athletes’ connection continued to grow deeper over the years. In May 2019, the defensive end got down on one knee after three years of dating.
“I’m the luckiest man in the world. #SheSaidYes,” Watt captioned a series of photos from his proposal. The former Houston Dash Captain shared her own set of engagement photos, gushing, “Still can’t believe I get to be with you forever. I love you @jjwatt.”
Less than one year after getting engaged, the twosome tied the knot in a stunning destination wedding in the Bahamas. “Best day of my life. Without question,” the Wisconsin native wrote via Instagram in February 2020 alongside a series of snaps from the couple’s special day.
Following their nuptials, the newlyweds were forced to postpone their honeymoon plans amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Watt later opened up about quarantining with his wife as they adjusted to married life.
“[These past months have] been obviously different,” Watt said during a Today interview in September 2020, adding that it was “great” to “spend a lot of time” with the Utah native. “I got married in February, so my wife and I, instead of being on a honeymoon, we got quarantined.”
After three months of lockdown, the athletes returned to their jobs to play in their respective bubbles. Ohai Watt rejoined her soccer team to play the season while in a bubble in Utah, while Watt returned to the NFL. He was released from the Houston Texans the following year and signed with the Arizona Cardinals in March 2021.
In June 2022, the duo announced that they were expecting their first child. They welcomed their son, Koa, four months later.
“Love and happiness have reached heights we never even knew existed. Koa James Watt 10.23.22,” The proud parents wrote in a joint Instagram post in October 2022, sharing a sweet snap of them cradling their newborn in the hospital.
Two months later, Watt announced his plans for retirement with a sentimental message to his family. “Koa’s first ever NFL game. My last ever NFL home game,” he tweeted in December 2022 alongside photos of his wife and child on the football field. “My heart is filled with nothing but love and gratitude. It’s been an absolute honor and a pleasure. 🙏🏼.”
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