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DeRozan admits his low SI ranking has fueled early scoring binge

Vaughn Ridley / Getty Images Sport / Getty

DeMar DeRozan is not letting this one go.

The 26-year-old shooting guard leads all players in scoring at nearly 36 points per game, and with his 34-point explosion on Friday, DeRozan has joined Michael Jordan as the only players in the last three decades to start the year with five straight 30-point games.

What's behind DeRozan's recent scoring binge? Toronto Raptors fans have Sports Illustrated's player rankings to thank.

"That has a lot to do with it," DeRozan said Friday after teammate Jonas Valanciunas interrupted the media scrum to remind DeRozan of his 46th ranking.

"No. 1 in our hearts," the jovial Valanciunas quickly shot back, according to Ryan Wolstat of the Toronto Sun.

This isn't the first time DeRozan has fired back at SI for their preseason NBA ranking of the top-100 players. He lashed out on Twitter at the time of the list's publication, then followed up weeks later by calling those rankings "stupid."

DeRozan has since bolstered his argument with an unreal run of play.

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