In React.js should I make my initial network request in componentWillMount or componentDidMount?

In the react docs it recommends making initial network requests in the componentDidMount method:

componentDidMount() is invoked immediately after a component is mounted. Initialization that requires DOM nodes should go here. If you need to load data from a remote endpoint, this is a good place to instantiate the network request. Setting state in this method will trigger a re-rendering.

If componentWillMount is called before rendering the component, isn't it better to make the request and set the state here? If I do so in componentDidMount, the component is rendered, the request is made, the state is changed, then the component is re-rendered. Why isn't it better to make the request before anything is rendered?

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