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Celtics Rumor Mill In Full Swing: Report Calls Pierce Buyout 'Likely'

BOSTON (CBS) - As was expected, rumors of Paul Pierce's future with the Boston Celtics are starting to come from nearly everywhere.

Even out of Cleveland.

The Cleveland News-Herald's Bob Finnan reported in his notes column over the weekend that his "sources indicate Celtics director of basketball operations Danny Ainge will likely buy out forward Paul Pierce's $15 million contract for next year ($5 million is guaranteed)."

Finnan goes on to talk about the Cavaliers' chances at landing Pierce (which wouldn't be all that great) should he be bought out, in addition to shooting down any rumors of Kevin Love wearing a Cavs uniform in the near future. That last part kind of makes the Pierce nugget believable, but only by comparison.

Listen: Celtics Owner Wyc Grousbeck On Felger & Mazz

Finnan isn't the first to report a potential buyout in Pierce's future, and won't be the last. It's been talked about since the Celtics fell to the Knicks in the first round of the playoffs the team could buy out Pierce in hopes of beginning the rebuilding stage and save some money in the process.

Pierce said himself he doesn't think he'll be back in Boston, so this news, and any rumors surrounding Pierce in a potential trade, should come as no surprise. The Celtics captain is expected to be one of the first dominoes to fall for Boston this off-season (along with head coach Doc Rivers and Kevin Garnett), and the rumors and speculation will only grow as June's NBA draft approaches.

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