The Miz
The Miz during the December 6 episode of Smackdown Twitter/WWE

The latest episode of Smackdown largely followed the expected script but had a couple of big surprises. The absence of Daniel Bryan and the beginning of a rivalry between The Miz and Bray Wyatt were the unexpected developments. Apart from them, other angles proceeded as per expectations.

So, let's look at the 5 biggest takeaways from the latest episode of WWE Smackdown

Miz turns face and becomes The Fiend's opponent

While most people expected Daniel Bryan to appear looking completely different after the assault from The Fiend last week, WWE had other plans. The decision to turn Miz into a face and have him facing the threat of Bray Wyatt may suggest that Bryan is taking a break from WWE. This could have been the original plan or perhaps, a late change to the script occasioned by an injury. Things are going to get interesting in this angle.

Lacey's rivalry with Bayley and Banks intensifies

After the confrontation between Lacey Evans and the pair of Women's champion Bayley and Sasha Banks, there was bound to be more action on this front. It happened with Bayley attacking Evans from behind and the two girls beating up the Sassy Southern Belle. A title match between Evans and Bayley with The Boss in the latter's corner is certain.

Roman Reigns
Roman was viciously attacked on the latest episode of Smackdown Twitter/WWE

Reigns and Corbin rivalry gets nasty

The humiliation heaped upon Roman Reigns by Baron Corbin has added more heat to their rivalry heading into the Tables, Ladders and Chairs match at the next pay-per-view. Due to his uninspiring persona, WWE has to push really hard to get Reigns over with the crowd. The vicious and denigrating assault by Dolph Ziggler and Corbin on The Big Dog was part of that attempt.

Elias being made more popular

It seems like Elias is now becoming a more active character on Smackdown. This is a welcome development. With a physique like him and an engaging personality like him, he should be pushed as a more prominent character on the show.

Nikki and Alexa's friendship blossoms

The friendship between Nikki Cross and Alexa Bliss got thicker with another match this week. This time, it was Nikki Cross who helped out the goddess, setting the stage for a tag team match between their team and the duo of Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville. This match is likely to take place at TLC.