Welcome to Wrestling Inc.'s live coverage of NJPW New Year Dash from the Ota City General Gymnasium in Tokyo, Japan. Join us for live coverage beginning at 4:30 am ET / 1:30 am PT. The event will stream on NJPW World and FITE.
NJPW has already stated the card will be announced at the beginning of the show. It was also announced Jushin Liger's retirement ceremony will be held at this event as he wraps up a career that spans nearly 36 years in pro wrestling.
- Kevin Kelly, Gino Gambino, Chris Charlton, and Rocky Romero on English commentary. The card was announced at the beginning of the show:
* Toa Henare, Yota Tsuji, and Yuya Uemura vs. Karl Fredericks, Clark Connors, and Alex Coughlin
* SHO and YOH vs. Hiromu Takahashi and BUSHI vs. El Desperado and Yoshinobu Kanemaru vs. Taiji Ishimori and El Pantasmo
* Juice Robinson, David Finlay, Hiroshi Tanahashi, and Kota Ibushi vs. Tama Tonga, Tanga Loa, Bad Luck Fale, and Chase Owens
* Hirooki Goto and Tomohiro Ishii vs. EVIL and Shingo Takagi
* Kazuchika Okada, YOSHI-HASHI, Will Ospreay, and Robbie Eagles vs. Minoru Suzuki, Zack Sabre Jr., Lance Archer, and Taichi
* Tetsuya Naito and SANADA vs. KENTA and Jay White
- Jushin Liger's Retirement Ceremony to kick off the show featuring a number of NJPW stars including Hiroshi Tanahashi, Ryu Lee, Tiger Mask IV, Taguchi, Nagata, Juice Robinson, and Kota Ibushi. Tanahashi gives flowers (meaning for new beginnings/new endings) to Liger and the group posed with Liger for photos. The wrestlers bow and shake hands with Liger before exiting the ring. Members of CHAOS (Kazuchika Okada, Rocky Romero, Will Ospreay, Robbie Eagles, YOSHI-HASHI, Hirooki Goto, Toru Yano, SHO, and YOH) then head out. Okada says some words to Liger, hands over flowers, Liger bows to the members and more photos. Okada then takes a selfie with the whole group. Liger is given more flowers by NJPW officials, including NJPW President Harold Meij.
Liger's family comes out. Antonio Inoki has a special message for Liger, wishing him good health in his new life and raises a glass to Liger on his special night. Liger gets the mic, talks about his final match, thanks the fans, and says NJPW will continue to thrive and get bigger thanks to everyone there. Liger notes his mother was at Tokyo Dome and at tonight's show. He thanks his mother for raising him. He says to his wife and son that he's made them so lonely from all the travel, but now he's coming home and they will have to put up with him. He thanks the fans again. A salute is given to Liger. He thanks the fans again. A 10-bell salute is given to Liger. The roster then joins him in the rings and lifts him in the air a couple times. His theme is played again. Liger then heads to the back on his own, giving high-fives to the fans along the way.
Toa Henare, Yota Tsuji, and Yuya Uemura vs. Karl Fredericks, Clark Connors, and Alex Coughlin
Back and forth action to get us started, Tsuji and Coughlin tag in. Big strikes from both wrestlers in the middle of the ring. Coughlin with a massive chop, gutwrench suplex, cover, two. Fredericks tags in and hits some big chops on Tsuji, and controls the match. Coughlin tags back in, more strikes and attacks. Tsuji asks for more, takes another, drops to a knee, then hits a body slam. Henare is tagged in, hits some big shoulder tackles on two guys, then knocks Connors over the apron. Coughlin with a chop, Henare asks for another and another. Henare with knee to the midsection and a big spinning kick to the face.
Fredericks tries to get involved, splashes his own partner. Connors in and hits a spear on Henare, cover, only two. Coughlin tries for a slam, Henare elbows out of it. Big chops from both guys. Henare with a suplex. Fredericks and Uemura collide in the ring. Uemura with big elbows, looks for double underhooks suplex, blocked. Fredericks with a back breaker, but Uemura with a dropkick and another in the corner. Double underhook suplex on Fredericks, cover, and it's broken up.
Uemura looks for the boston crab and gets it. Fredericks tries to get to the ropes, but is pulled back to the middle. The submission is broken up. Fredericks up and hits a twisting dropkick on Uemura. Uemura with a sneaky roll-up for two. Spinebuster by Fredericks, kip-up (kind of), leaping elbow, single leg boston crab locked in with some kicks to the back of the head. Fredericks really wrenches back and Uemura taps out.
Winners: Karl Fredericks, Clark Connors, and Alex Coughlin via Submission
- Post-match, some more brawling takes place. Henare tells commentary says a fire started in him in 2019, but in "2020 that fire rises."
SHO and YOH vs. Hiromu Takahashi and BUSHI vs. El Desperado and Yoshinobu Kanemaru vs. Taiji Ishimori and El Pantasmo
Things off to a fast start with all four teams. YOH and SHO look to fly, get tripped up by Kanemaru and Desperado, then sent into the barricade. BUSHI and Takahashi plant Phantasmo down on the mat. Double kicks to YOH, cover, two. Ishimori tags in, springboards in for a rough landing on Takahashi, then throws him into the corner. Phantasmo in now, plants Takahashi, Phantasmo stomps the knee (a la Liger) and then does Liger's pose to a chorus of boos. Takahashi put in tree of woe, dropkick by Phantasmo. Ishimori and Phantasmo step down between Takahashi's legs, but Kanemaru tags in by slapping Phantasmo in the face. Takahashi sent out to the floor, draped over the barricade and Kanemaru hits a leg lariat down on him.
Back in the ring, Desperado and Kanemaru stomp away at Takahashi. Bullet Club heads in and Phantasmo with a back rake. The four look to fight each other, stop, then all decide to stomp on Takahashi. SHO and YOH try to get in and help, but they are sent out and the group continues to stomp away to some boos from the crowd. YOH tags in, goes to work at first, but then eats a pop-up powerbomb. BUSHI tags in, drops Ishimori, hits a double-rana on Phantasmo and Ishimori, sending Phantasmo out of the ring, BUSHI with a big suicide dive on him. Desperado tags himself in, slaps Ishimori in the head and Ishimori returns the favor. Desperado with an eye gouge, Ishimori with a handspring kick.
Ishimori looks to tag out, SHO yanks Phantasmo off the ring, then tags in. Commentary noting he wasn't in his corner though, so not technically legal. YOH and SHO go to work on getting rid of BUSHI. YOH leaps off SHO's back for an elbow in the corner. Desperado throws the two partners into each other, but they hit stereo knees. They look for 3k, but others take them out. Everyone getting involved now and taking a move. YOH with a flip out to the floor. SHO and Desperado finally get the ring back to themselves and throw big shots in the ring. SHO looks for shock arrow, no, headbutt to Desperado, big punch to SHO's face. BUSHI tried to blind Desperado with the mist, but ends up hitting SHO. BUSHI able to take advantage with the pin, 1-2-3.
Winners: El Desperado and Yoshinobu Kanemaru via Pinfall
- Commentary announces 74,149 three-day attendance total for the past three nights. That means 4,078 are in attendance for tonight's show.
Juice Robinson, David Finlay, Hiroshi Tanahashi, and Kota Ibushi vs. Tama Tonga, Tanga Loa, Bad Luck Fale, and Chase Owens
Ibushi and Owens get things started. Owens tries to get Ibushi to join back up with the Bullet Club and puts up "too sweet." Ibushi smacks his hand away and Owens drops Ibushi, then throws him into the corner. Ibushi able to drop Owens and then tags in Tanahashi. Back elbow, second rope crossbody, combos land, then Tonga with the cheap kick to the back. Owens throws Tanahashi into the corner, he moves, but Fale drops Tana. Things breaking down on the outside with Bullet Club taking over.
Gedo with a bat to Tanahashi's midsection as the referee is trying to get control of things. Tonga and Finlay are fighting out in the crowd, Tonga grabs a fan's stuffed animal and hits Finlay with it. Back in the ring, Owens drops Tanahashi, cover, two. Owens mocks Tana's air guitar. Fale is tagged in, Tanahashi tries to fight back, looks for a body slam, no luck. Tanahashi tries to crossbody both Tonga and Owens off the apron, they catch him and toss him down to the mat. Tonga tags in, crowd very much behind Tanahashi. Tonga with a big dropkick, cover, two. Loa tags in, works over Tanahashi until he can finally hit twist-and-shout. Juice able to tag in, sends Loa into the corner, big lariat in the corner, cannonball senton in the corner. "Juice!" chant as he punches Loa over and over, finishing with left hand of God. Tries for pulp friction, Tonga with the tonga twist. Finlay gets in there and flies around the ring, hits an nice flying uppercut.
Owens with a big kick to Finlay, sends Ibushi to the floor and hits a big dropkick through the ropes. Juice getting beat up by G.O.D., but Finlay in there to help and we see stereo side suplexes. Fale in and drops the tag champs. Owens tags in, misses a gutbuster, Ibushi gets tagged in. Ibushi with a single-leg kick. Fale from behind with a cheap shot. Ibushi with double pele kick. "Ibushi!" chant breaks out. Flurry of kicks to Owens, Gedo with the cheap kendo stick shot to the back of Ibushi, cover, and it gets broken up. Owens with shining wizard, pin, two-count. Owens with a v-trigger, package piledriver, but Ibushi fights out of it and hits a running knee strike. Tanahashi comes in for slingblade after a kick by Ibushi. Ibushi with Kamigoye to the face, 1-2-3.
Winners: Juice Robinson, David Finlay, Hiroshi Tanahashi, and Kota Ibushi via Pinfall
- Post-match, the winning team celebrates then Tanahashi and Ibushi notice there's two of them and they give Robinson and Finlay's IWGP Tag Titles a look. The champs are a bit surprised, but don't seem to mind a future match with them.
Hirooki Goto and Tomohiro Ishii vs. EVIL and Shingo Takagi
EVIL and Ishii throwing bomb, Ishii with the quick cover, two. Ishii tries for a brainbuster, no, EVIL with darkness falls, cover, and a close three! Ishii with a headbutt, double lariats and both fall to the mat. Goto and Takagi tag in with Goto getting the best of his opponent early on. Goto with a kick to the back, Takagi didn't appreciate that and throws some chops, back elbow, Goto with a shot, they go for double lariats, Goto down and Takagi eventually crumples to the mat. On the outside, EVIL puts a chair around Ishii's neck and smacks it with another chair, sending it into the crowd.
Takagi sends Goto into the barricade, then chokes him against it. Ishii gets sent right into the ring post, chop to the chest. Referee starts up his 20-count, Takagi puts Goto in the ring, slingshot stomp to the chest. Goto having to deal with EVIL now, EVIL with a running elbow, bronco buster, cover, two. Goto with chops, but Takagi hits a double chop that flattens his opponent. Takagi with a big suplex, cover, two. Takagi then does the title pose as he beats up NEVER Openweight Champion Goto. Couple taunting kicks/slap by Takagi, Goto with a big shot that drops him, but EVIL can tag in. Goto with a big lariat to EVIL. Ishii heads in, running clothesline in the corner, punches and chops wear away at EVIL. Referee tries to get him to stop and Ishii barks at him. Ishii with a shoulder tackle. EVIL able to get Ishii caught up in the ropes and hit a single stomp to the chest, fisherman buster, cover, two. EVIL with misdirection, lariat lands. Goto tries to get involved, but Takagi intercepts him with a lariat to clear him out.
EVIL with a scorpion deathlock in the middle of the ring. Goto able to break the submission. Takagi with multiple headbutts, Goto with a sleeper hold, but Takagi just hits him with an electric chair. Ishii getting beat up by both opponents, darkness falls hits, cover, two. Both guys try for their finishers, both countered, Ishii with an enziguri. Takagi and Goto both tag in and hit double lariats over and over. Goto tries for GTR, no, Takagi with a sliding lariat, pin, two-count. Goto with a spinning heel kick, saito slam, cover, and EVIL breaks it up. Ishii right in there with a back drop suplex. Takagi with double clothesline attempts, no luck, Goto and Ishii with an assisted GTR, looked nasty, cover, two.
Goto looks for GTR, but EVIL breaks it up. Everyone gets taken down with a lariat! Goto and Takagi trade strikes in the ring. Big slaps to the face! Headbutts! Crowd is going wild for Goto and Takagi. Goto goes for a kick, blocked, Takagi with his own version of the GTR. Takagi hits Last Of The Dragon (Wrist-clutch fisherman driver) for the victory! Best match of the night, thus far.
Winners: Shingo Takagi and EVIL via Pinfall
- Post-match, EVIL and Ishii face off a bit. Takagi then takes the mic after pinning the NEVER Openweight Champion. Takagi says he knew Goto was tough, but at the end of the day Takagi beat him. Takagi reminded Goto they are 1-1, so how about a rubber match? He says Tetsuya Naito winning the Heavyweight and Intercontinental Titles last night instilled some new energy in him and he wants a shot at Goto's title. Goto was carried off by the young lions, so no answer was given.
Kazuchika Okada, YOSHI-HASHI, Will Ospreay, and Robbie Eagles vs. Minoru Suzuki, Zack Sabre Jr., Lance Archer, and Taichi
Despite reports of Ospreay sustaining a heel injury at Wrestle Kingdom, he's working today's show. Ospreay and Sabre get things started. Sabre and Ospreay with some chain wrestling to get us started, Ospreay able to drop Sabre for a moment to get a wristlock. Sabre doesn't stay down for long though. Ospreay with a hurricanrana and then tags in Eagles for stereo back elbows and kicks. Suzuki gets tagged in and beats the heck out of Eagles. He takes Eagles out to the floor, throws a barricade down on him, then a bunch of chairs down on the barricade.
A lot more brawling goes down on the floor with Eagles barely making it back into the ring before the 20-count. Back in the ring Archer asks Eagles to hit him, he does over and over. Archer throws one shot that drops Eagles. He charges in, but Eagles throws a couple kicks. Archer with a pounce on his opponent and then just tosses him across the ring. Sabre tags back in and Eagles ends up getting mugged for the next couple minutes, at times the entire team was beating him up at one time. YOSHI-HASHI finally gets tagged in and takes out the other team. He tries to suplex Archer, but doesn't have any luck. Goes for a lariat, a second one drops Archer to one knee, but Archer rises up and drops YOSHI-HASHI with a lariat of his own.
Taichi tags in and throws some taunting kicks to YOSHI. Taichi then goes up against Okada and hits a high-elevation back body drop on Okada. Okada is slow to get up and Taichi boots him right in the head, cover, two. Taichi rips the pants off and Eagles with a springboard dropkick. Suzuki then tries to choke out Eagles, Ospreay with a kick to Suzuki. Sabre gets rid of Ospreay, Lariat on Sabre by YOSHI. Blackhole slam by Archer on YOSHI, and Okada hits a dropkick on Archer. Okada focuses back on Taichi who hits a lowblow, then smacks Okada with the iron glove! Referee calls for the match.
Winners: Kazuchika Okada, YOSHI-HASHI, Will Ospreay, and Robbie Eagles via DQ
- Post-match, Taichi kicks down the referee. He chokes Okada with the mic stand, then puts the iron glove back on. Sabre and Ospreay fighting on the outside. Taichi puts a foot on Okada's neck and taunts some more. Taichi looks to finish off Okada, but Jon Moxley heads out through the crowd and brawls with Suzuki! Moxley hits death rider to put down Suzuki and heads off. Suzuki laughs in the ring and all the way to the back.
Tetsuya Naito and SANADA vs. KENTA and Jay White
KENTA's music hits and the boos instantly ring out. KENTA attacked Naito at the very end of Wrestle Kingdom during his celebration. He loves the boos and eggs the crowd on some more. SANADA and White gets things started, but the match ends up on the floor. KENTA goes after Naito and throws him hard into the barricade. KENTA with a DDT on the floor, then stands on the new champ. Crowd boos him, then chants for "Naito!" KENTA mockingly claps along. Back in the ring White beats up SANADA some more. KENTA tags in, taunts a bit more, then throws a kick to SANADA's back. Crowd chants for KENTA to go home, lol, a chant previously used for Taichi. On the floor, KENTA throws Naito back into the barricade and steps on his neck again.
KENTA heads back into the ring, sends SANADA into the corner and swings away. White tags back in and continues to control the offense. KENTA in the ring, swings away on SANADA. He then runs over and knocks Naito off the apron, yet again. Naito finally gets tagged in and gets some offense on KENTA, dropkick to the back of the head. White runs in, snapmare, kick to the back of the head. Naito stares at KENTA for a moment, then kicks him in the midsection. Naito charges in, KENTA tries to kick him, Naito grabs his feet, then just spits in his face. Neckbreaker lands and Naito does his signature taunt.
Back and forth punches in the middle of the ring. KENTA with a DDT and tags in White. Naito is able to avoid too much damage as he gets SANADA in the match. SANADA gets both opponents on the floor and hits crossbody dives on each guy. In the ring, SANADA boots White, White yanks Red Shoes in front of SANADA then hits a saito suplex on SANADA. White knocks Naito off the apron and down to the barricade. SANADA looks for skull end, Gedo tries to get involved, but SANADA kicks the second rope and catches him between the legs. SANADA locks in skull end, swings White down, heads to the top rope, moonsault and lands on his feet. Blade runner, no, skull end, no, White with a suplex. KENTA sending Naito into the barricade on the floor. White goes for blade runner, no, SANADA with a tricky pin, stacking up White for the win!
Winners: SANADA and Tetsuya Naito via Pinfall
- Post-match, White with a lowblow on SANADA. KENTA is still beating up Naito, then swings away on the young lions. White swings away on SANADA in the ring. KENTA puts Naito in the ring and keeps swinging away. Gedo grabs two chairs and hands them over to his guys. Stereo chair swings, over and over. Time keeper is ringing that bell. Crowd still chanting for KENTA to go home. White gets on the microphone, crowd already booing. White says a new opportunity has presented itself to him. He says SANADA believes far too much in himself and he'll bring SANADA back to reality. White continues that SANADA is not better than him.
KENTA is handed the microphone, crowd boos. KENTA says White called the crowd a bunch of idiots. KENTA mocking Naito about the band being back together. KENTA eggs the crowd to chant more about him going home, but he's not going home. He calls the LIJ fans "gross." KENTA says his point is that he's going to take the two titles from Naito and challenges the champion. SANADA's music plays (because he won the match for his team), KENTA tells them to cut the music and play his instead, crowd boos. White, KENTA, and Gedo "too sweet" each other. KENTA jaws with the fans and dances some more on his way to the back. Naito is helped to the back by some young lions as the show closes.