Deja Lighty’s boyfriend, Donovan Mitchell, has put together a superb first two NBA seasons. He’s in the midst of an impressive encore performance to year one of his NBA career with the Utah Jazz. Mitchell was one of the most exciting rookies in the NBA last season and he finished behind Ben Simmons for the NBA Rookie of the Year Award.
Lighty also previously had a career in the basketball world as well. She worked as an Account Executive with the Cleveland Cavaliers, according to her LinkedIn profile. Lighty also has several years of experience working with high school and collegiate basketball teams.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Lighty Was With Mitchell in Los Angeles for 2018 All-Star Weekend
NBA All-Star Weekend has gone Hollywood and Lighty is along for the ride. On Feb. 16 she tweeted: “Oh hello beautiful, sunny LA”. She spent the first night of all-star weekend cheering on her boyfriend in the Rising Stars Challenge. An exhibition featuring rookies and second-year NBA players.
Lighty also voted for her boyfriend to win MVP of the game on social media by tweeting out his name with the hashtag #KickStartRisingStars. Mitchell had seven points, seven assists and five steals in the game including one monster dunk, however, he did not win MVP.
2. She Also Works/Worked in the Sports Industry
Lighty has a long history of working in sports, especially basketball. She was the team manager for the boy’s basketball team at her high school, Montclair Kimberley Academy, according to LinkedIn. Her profile also says she also serves as a Basketball Recruiter for Temple University, assisting with preparation for team practices and games in addition to working closely with coaches for data collection on recruitment and general administration needs.
In January she added a new role to her LinkedIn profile, accepting a job with the Cleveland Cavaliers as an Account Executive for Organizational Business Development. Lighty has also worked as an intern for RocNation a sports and entertainment agency which has many prominent clients.
3. Lighty is the Daughter of Former Hip Hop Mogul Chris Lighty
In 2012, when Deja was just 16-years-old, her father Chris Lighty committed suicide after a heated argument with his ex-wife, according to the New York Daily News. Lighty was a longtime music manager who worked with stars such as 50 Cent, Busta Rhymes, Diddy, Ja Rule and Mariah Carey. According to the Daily News, he said “I’m tired of this,” before shooting himself in the head behind his home in South Riverdale.
At the time of his death, Lighty still owed more than $330,000 in state and federal taxes. He was also sued by his bank for overdrawing his account by more than $50,000. However according to MTV, Lighty’s debt was not a major factor leading to his suicide. His death came as a shock to the music world. “It’s just devastating, he was the personification of hip hop’s growth into the world,” Dan Charnas told the Daily News. Charnas is the author of “The Big Payback: The History of the Business of Hip-Hop”.
4. Lighty and Mithcell Both Grew Up Near New York City
Deja Lighty grew up in the family’s house in the Bronx, but she attended high school across the Hudson River in northern New Jersey at Montclair Kimberley Academy. According to her LinkedIn profile, she graduated high school in 2014 and was the Varsity cheerleading captain. She also played on the girl’s lacrosse team and was Winter Musical Dance Captain.
Meanwhile, Mitchell grew up a little further north along I-95, in Greenwich, Connecticut. He attended Brewster Academy and played AAU basketball in New York City. According to Mithcell’s collegiate bio, his favorite basketball team is the Cleveland Cavaliers, the team Deja currently works for.
5. They Are in a Long Distance Relationship
Lighty’s LinkedIn profile says she lives in Cleveland. Meanwhile Mitchell is a member of the Utah Jazz, who play their home games in Salt Lake City. Lighty frequently flies back and forth between Ohio and Utah. She recently tweeted: “Leaving SLC gets harder and harder every time.”
Mitchell also enjoys spending time with his family in Connecticut. The rookie recently bought his mother a new Audi truck. Part of the caption read: “Words can’t describe how happy I am to be able to give you this car!”