Who Is Adele's Boyfriend? All About Rich Paul

Adele and Rich Paul stepped out publicly for the first time at the NBA Finals in 2021

adele, rich paul
Adele; Rich Paul. Photo: getty (2)

For Adele and sports agent Rich Paul, their love is not a game.

The pair were first spotted publicly on July 17, 2021, during Game 5 of the NBA Finals, where the Milwaukee Bucks beat out the Phoenix Suns 123-119. After they were spotted courtside in 2021, a source confirmed to PEOPLE that the award-winning singer had been dating Paul for "a few months." Adele also opened to Vogue about attending the match as a couple for her November 2021 cover story.

"I didn't mean to go public with it. I just wanted to go to the game," she said. "I just love being around him. I just love it."

Adele added about Paul, "He's great. He's so f—ing funny. He's so smart, you know."

Since their first public outing, the two have cozied up at more basketball games and enjoyed date night in Los Angeles and a romantic vacation in Italy throughout 2022.

So, who is the man receiving Adele's sweetest devotion? From meeting LeBron James to becoming one of the industry's most powerful sports agents, here's everything to know about Rich Paul and his relationship with Adele.

Adele
Adele and Rich Paul. Christian Petersen/Getty

He is the founder of a sports agency

While Adele may be a powerhouse in the music industry, Paul is a stalwart on the sports scene.

As the founder of Klutch Sports Group, Paul represents some of the biggest names in basketball — including James, Ben Simmons and Trae Young.

Known for driving hard bargains, he oversaw the New Orleans Pelicans' trade of Anthony Davis to the Los Angeles Lakers, who would go on to win the championship in 2020.

In a The New Yorker profile published in May 2021, Paul was described by an NBA general manager as "absolutely unrelenting in getting his players what they want, and he will use every means available to him to do that."

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Rich Paul. Allen Berezovsky/Getty

He is from Cleveland, Ohio

Although Paul now calls Beverly Hills home, he was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio, where his late father, Rich Sr., owned a corner store called R & J Confectionery.

Paul had enrolled in the University of Akron but transferred to Cleveland State when Rich Sr. was diagnosed with intestinal cancer. He dropped out of college a few months after his father's death.

"He was always telling me my education was important," Paul told The New Yorker of his dad. "I always wanted to work. But I still probably would have finished school if my father was alive. I never wanted to let him down."

He dreamed of being an athlete

In his profile with the New Yorker, Paul said that he "definitely wanted to be an athlete" growing up but knew that he had to think outside of the box to find a career in sports.

"Your heart is big, but I'm small in size," he said, explaining that he started to think like his father "as an entrepreneur and businessman."

In 2022, he met his first — and possibly biggest — client, James, as they were both waiting for a flight to Atlanta at the Akron-Canton Airport. At the time, Paul was selling vintage sports jerseys, and the authentic Houston Oilers jersey he had on impressed James.

Paul began working with James shortly after the basketball player was drafted into the NBA. Alongside James and his childhood friends Maverick Carter and Randy Mims, Paul and the group became known as the Four Horsemen.

"I just felt like Rich was someone I wanted to grow with," James told ESPN Magazine in 2012. "He'd always kept it real with me, and I wanted him to be down with my team."

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LeBron James (L) and Rich Paul. Jerritt Clark/Getty

He has three children

Little is known about Paul's relationships before he started dating Adele. However, in a June 2022 interview with E! News, he spoke about having three children, one of them a daughter who was "a junior in college." He also suggested that he was open to having more children.

"As a young dad, growing a business, it was pretty tough," he said. "But now, looking as an older dad, if I was to have more kids, I'm looking forward to being a different dad."

Paul added, "Oftentimes, as you're building a business, you're on the go, you're moving around, the kids grow up fast in a blink of an eye. Next thing, you know, they're walking, and they're riding the bike, running and flipping around, and that's the problem."

He learned his trade at a powerhouse agency

After joining James' inner circle, Paul began working under Leon Rose at Creative Artists Agency. During his time there, he made powerful connections and developed lasting relationships that eventually helped him start his own agency, Klutch Sports Group, in 2012.

"I had great teaching," Paul said in his ESPN Magazine profile. "Working with Nike and at CAA, that's the equivalent of going to Michigan Law School and to MIT."

He helped change the rules of the NCAA

In August 2019, Paul made headlines when the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) changed its regulations requiring agents to hold a bachelor's degree. The change came soon after Paul successfully negotiated a deal for high school prospect Darius Bazley to intern for New Balance rather than play college basketball for Syracuse University.

Dubbed the "Rich Paul Rule" by many, NCAA retracted the new regulation one week later after the sports agent penned an op-ed in The Atlantic saying that the change was "preventing young people from less prestigious backgrounds, and often people of color, from working in the system they continue to control."

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Rich Paul. Allen Berezovsky/Getty

He was previously linked to Tobey Maguire's ex-wife Jennifer Meyer

A source told PEOPLE that before Paul went public with his romance with Adele, he was in a serious relationship with Tobey Maguire's ex-wife Jennifer Meyer. The two were first linked in late 2018.

He met Adele at a party

In the aforementioned 2021 interview with Vogue, Adele revealed that she had met Paul at a party a few years before.

"I was a bit drunk," she revealed. "I said, 'Do you want to sign me? I'm an athlete now.'"

Adele added, "He was dancing. All the other guys were just sitting around. He was just dancing away."

He is writing a memoir

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Roc Lit 101 — the publishing division of Jay-Z's Roc Nation and an imprint of Random House — has acquired Paul's life story for an upcoming memoir.

Titled Lucky Me, the book will document Paul's upbringing in Cleveland and his rise as a sports agent.

"Lucky Me is more than my story," Paul said in March 2021. "Lucky Me is the story of every young Black man who grew up like me. I want to use my story to uplift and inspire those who lived this and educate those who didn't. I cannot tell you what it means to partner with my friend and mentor Jay-Z on this project. Lucky Me was the name of the book before I even spoke with Jay because his music was my life's soundtrack."

Adele thinks he is "hilarious"

During Adele's CBS special in November 2021 with Oprah Winfrey titled Adele One Night Only, the "Easy on Me" singer shared one one of her favorite things about Paul.

"He's just hilarious," she said. "Oh, he's so funny … and very smart. It's quite incredible watching him do what he does."

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