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Where does Brent Burns' season rank against the all-time best?

Brent Burns is currently third in the NHL in scoring. Where does his production relative to his peers this season rank against the all-time greatest defensemen? Gavin Baker/Icon Sportswire

Putting scoring accomplishments in context can be quite challenging in the NHL, because the league has undergone so many changes.

For instance, when Wayne Gretzky scored 92 goals in the 1981-82 season, the league averaged 8.02 goals per game; compare that to the current situation, where teams combine for just 5.56 goals per game.

That brings us to San Jose Sharks defenseman Brent Burns. Burns is currently third in the NHL, with 64 points, and the two players he is behind -- Sidney Crosby and Connor McDavid -- are the world's best hockey player and the heir apparent to that title, respectively.

So when we're trying to put Burns' torrid scoring pace in perspective, there are two approaches we can take: Adjust for era by using league averages, or compare him to his peers in the post-2004 lockout era.

Let's take a look at both.