Every Wednesday during the season, NHL.com Correspondent Brian Metzer will provide you with an in-depth analysis of fantasy defensemen in our weekly segment: "On the 'D'-fence." From updated defensemen rankings to guys you should keep a close eye on and much more, Metzer will be your fantasy d-man insider all season long.
There's a legend round these parts about a young defensemen who exploded onto the scene with 78 points in 81 games at the tender age of 21. That total was good enough to put him in a 10th-place tie in the NHL's scoring race during the 2011-12 season.
They say he fired 261 shots on goal, with 19 of them finding pay dirt. He even managed to roll up an impressive plus-16 rating, 28 power-play points and five game-winning goals.
The numbers were otherworldly for a defenseman -- some would even call them godlike -- and they earned the young man the Norris Trophy, identifying him as the finest blueliner in all the land.
That kind of productivity brings with it a certain set of expectations.
Those expectations can be burdensome for a player, especially one like the Ottawa Senators' Erik Karlsson, who now at 23 is trying to bounce back from a serious injury that cost him all but 17 games of what was supposed to be a second Norris-caliber season.