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NJPW Together Project Special results: Chaos vs. LIJ

NJPW returned today with its first show in 110 days, the Together Project Special.

The show began with a video recap of some of the Together Project content posted on NJPW World over the last few months. The recap continued with video messages sent in from NJPW fans celebrating the return. 

After the video package, we got our first look at the empty arena. The set resembled an empty theater. 

The ring announcer called out the Taguchi Japan members of the NJPW roster. Hiroshi Tanahashi cut a promo in Japanese. 

The ring announcer then presented the card for the evening. 

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Recommended matches: Kazuchika Okada, SHO & YOH vs. Tetsuya Naito, Shingo Takagi & Hiromu Takahashi

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Report --

Yota Tsuji defeated Gabriel Kidd

This was your standard, technically sound NJPW opener. 

Kidd got a waistlock takedown. Tsuji powered Kidd back into the ropes and broke cleanly. Each tried to work the other's left arm. Kidd briefly had an armbar before Tsuji grabbed a heel hook. Kidd escaped and applied a cross armbreaker but Tsuji forced an immediate rope break. 

Tsuji hit a shoulder tackle. Tsuji hit a series of strikes in the corner. Tsuji hit a hip toss for a near fall. Tsuji applied a camel clutch. Tsuji hit a splash for another near fall. 

Kidd blocked a slam and hit one of his own. Kidd tried a pair of tackles but could not get Tsuji down. Kidd hit some forearm strikes and then finally got Tsuji off his feet with a tackle. Kidd hit a dropkick for a two count. 

Kidd fought for a full crab. Tsuji kicked him off so Kidd settled for a single-leg crab. Tsuji forced a rope break. 

Tsuji hit a backdrop and used a vertical suplex for a two count. Kidd used a cradle for a surprise near fall. They traded strikes and some hard slaps. 

For the finish, Tsuji used a spear for a two count then got a full Boston crab applied. Kidd tapped. 

El Desperado & Yoshinobu Kanemaru defeated Tomohiro Ishii & Yuya Uemura

This was a very good undercard tag match. 

Desperado and Kanemaru attacked before the opening bell. They hit Ishii with a 3D and he rolled outside. Uemura came back with a dropkick on both Desperado and Kanemaru. Kanemaru cut him off with an eye rake. 

Desperado taunted Ishii and Ishii jumped in illegally. Ishii and Desperado traded strikes while Kanemaru ran Uemura into the barricade. 

Kanemaru tagged in and continued working Uemura over. Kanemaru used a camel clutch while Ishii and Desperado fought on the floor. Desperado raked Ishii's eyes. 

Uemura missed one dropkick but hit a second and tagged Ishii. Ishii dropped Kanemaru with a tackle. Ishii no-sold an eye rake. Desperado nailed Ishii from the apron. Ishii brought Desperado inside with a brainbuster. 

Desperado and Kanemaru tried to double team Ishii. Ishii side-stepped a big boot and Kanemaru nailed Desperado. Ishii hit Kanemaru with a powerslam. 

Kanemaru hit a low dropkick to Ishii's left leg. Desperado tagged in and worked on the same leg. Desperado tried Numero Dos but Ishii forced a rope break. Ishii hit a backdrop suplex and tagged out. 

Uemura entered and first went after Kanemaru on the floor, whipping him into the barricade. He then attacked Desperado with a vertical suplex and a full crab. Kanemaru attacked and forced Uemura to give up the hold. 

Desperado hit Uemura with a spinebuster. Kanemaru connected with a one-legged dropkick and Desperado covered for a two count. Ishii jumped in. Uemura cradled Desperado for a two count. 

Desperado hit a spear for a near fall then used the stretch muffler for the submission win. 

Yujiro Takahashi, Taiji Ishimori, Gedo & Jado defeated Hirooki Goto, Toru Yano, Tomoaki Honma & YOSHI-HASHI

This was a comedy brawl. Sometimes the comedy was unintentional. This would have been a stretch to make work in front of a crowd and it had no chance in this setting. 

All of these guys were very vocal. Jado can barely move and shouldn't be in the ring. 

Yujiro and Goto began. Goto went for an ushigoroshi early but Yujiro blocked. 

Yano and Jado tagged in. Yano grabbed a corner pad and Jado brought his kendo stick into the ring. Yano ducked a kendo stick shot. Jado took the ref and Yujiro attacked Yano. 

YH tagged in. Gedo hit him from behind and attempted a double team but YH fought it off. Jado cut YH off and the heels took turns working him over. YH hit a headhunter on Ishimori to set up a tag to Goto. 

Goto used a misdirection lariat, a wheel kick and a Saito suplex to earn a near fall. Ishimori blocked an ushigoroshi and hit a handspring kick. 

Gedo tagged in and hit a jaw breaker. Goto blocked a thrust kick and tagged Honma. Honma sent Gedo into the exposed buckle and hit a bulldog. Honma missed a kokeshi. 

Yujiro tagged in and all four faces teamed up against him. Honma hit a kokeshi for a near fall. Honma hit a slam. Honma tried a kokeshi off the second rope but missed. 

Jado used a kendo stick on Honma. Yujiro followed with a fisherman buster but Goto broke up the pin. 

Yujiro then hit Pimp Juice for the pin. 

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A hype video played for The Grand Master. He is coming soon. 

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Some staff members were shown cleaning the ring and ringside area. The announcers filled time. The announcers were several feet apart with partitions between them. 

We then got an official cleaning and disinfection intermission. 

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Satoshi Kojima, Hiroyoshi Tenzan & Ryusuke Taguchi defeated EVIL, SANADA & BUSHI 

These guys had a really good match and the finish was surprising. The time off looked to have done Tenzan some good as he was moving well. 

Taguchi and SANADA locked up. They had a nice chain wrestling exchange that ended in a stalemate. Taguchi offered a fist bump but then kicked SANADA instead. 

They did a great comedy spot where Taguchi thought he had successfully applied the paradise lock. He hadn't. Taguchi did his Nakamura mannerisms and hit a hip attack to SANADA's head. 

Tenzan and SANADA traded palm strikes to the chest. Tenzan hit some Mongolian chops. Kojima cleared the LIJ corner and joined Tenzan for some tandem offense on SANADA. 

LIJ took control of the match after BUSHI tripped Tenzan from the floor. BUSHI tagged in and choked Tenzan with his shirt. LIJ took turns working over Tenzan. Tenzan managed to tag out after hitting a wheel kick to EVIL. 

Kojima hit machine gun chops on EVIL and connected with the follow-up top rope elbow for a near fall. Taguchi tagged in for a series of hip attacks on SANADA and BUSHI. 

Taguchi hit a springboard hip attack and used an ankle lock on SANADA. Taguchi blocked a TKO, blocked a Skull End and used a cradle for a two count. SANADA hit a low dropkick. 

The match broke down. BUSHI hit Taguchi with a backstabber for a two count. BUSHI hit a rewind kick. Taguchi countered with a hip attack and an ankle lock. SANADA broke up the hold. Tenzan and Kojima hit a TenCozy Cutter on EVIL. 

BUSHI blocked Dodon. Taguchi hit a Bomaye for a two count, then got the ankle lock applied again. BUSHI tapped out. 

Hiroshi Tanahashi, Kota Ibushi, Togi Makabe & Yuji Nagata defeated Minoru Suzuki, Zack Sabre Jr., Taichi & DOUKI

This was about setting up New Japan Cup matches and teasing some spots for those matches. 

Suzuki-gun attacked before the opening bell in this match as well. Suzuki and Nagata started off as the legal men and traded strikes. 

Sabre and Ibushi tagged in. They traded strikes until Sabre grabbed a hold. Ibushi tried to shoot Sabre off into the ropes but Sabre hit a flapjack and Suzuki-gun turned this into a brawl around ringside. 

Suzuki-gun isolated Ibushi in their corner. It was something else seeing DOUKI get offense on Ibushi. Ibushi came back with a backflip kick and tagged out. 

Tanahashi hit a slam and a somersault senton on Taichi for a two count. Taichi blocked a slingblade. Tana blocked a backdrop suplex. They traded strikes. Taichi hit a high kick. He went for a buzzsaw kick but Tana blocked and hit a dragon screw. 

Makabe tagged in and hit Taichi with punches in the corner. Sabre and Suzuki tried to interfere but they were intercepted by Tana and Ibushi. 

DOUKI and Makabe ended up as the legal men. Makabe got caught in a triangle but forced a rope break. Everyone jumped in for a big move. Nagata and Suzuki brawled to the floor. 

DOUKI hit Makabe with a pipe and rolled him up. Makabe kicked out at two. Makabe then hit a slam and hit the King Kong Knee Drop for the pin. 

Taichi and Tanahashi had a long staredown after the match. 

Tetsuya Naito, Hiromu Takahashi & Shingo Takagi defeated Kazuchika Okada, SHO & YOH

This was a super fun main event. 

Okada and Naito began the match. They locked up. Okada broke cleanly against the ropes. Naito kicked Okada off the break. They traded holds. Naito used a side headlock takeover. Okada used a headscissors escape. 

Shingo and SHO tagged in for an electric exchange. Hiromu jumped in. YOH intercepted him and SHO and YOH nailed Hiromu with dropkicks. 

SHO got the upper hand on Shingo with some hard kicks. Shingo sold them big time for SHO. SHO tried a series of lariats but Shingo did not go down. 

LIJ used an illegal triple team to assert control of the match. They isolated SHO in their corner and worked him over. Shingo used a brainbuster for a near fall. Naito tagged in and worked on SHO's left leg. Hiromu tagged in and worked on the left leg and left arm. 

Hiromu hit a dropkick and made a cover but YOH broke up the pin after just a one count. SHO came back with a spear to Shingo and a vertical suplex on Hiromu. 

Okada tagged in for a running back elbow, a running back elbow in the corner and a DDT for a two count. Hiromu avoided a top rope elbow attempt and Okada landed on his feet. Hiromu avoided a tombstone and dropped Okada with a back suplex. 

Naito and Okada had another exchange. Naito avoided an air raid crash on the first attempt. Okada landed the move on the second try. 

YOH tagged in and nailed Naito with a flying forearm and a missile dropkick for a near fall. LIJ saved for Naito. The match broke down. SHO and Shingo jumped in and hit lariats. 

Naito went for Destino. YOH blocked and rolled up Naito for a two count. Naito blocked a falcon arrow and hit a flipping inverted Destino. I'm not sure that's what the move is, but I don't know what else to call it. The move looks awesome. 

Naito then hit YOH with the traditional Destino and pinned him. 

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Naito cut a promo to close the show. He mentioned the New Japan Cup and ended with the LIJ roll call.