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Marc Stein: Kevin Garnett wants to play for another year

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Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports

Add Marc Stein of ESPN to the list of writers who think Kevin Garnett will be back next season.  While some have suggested that KG could retire, Chris Mannix and Nets beat writers Tim Bontemps and Ohm Youngmisuk are already on the record that KG will not leave $12 million on the table and step aside.

Stein writes Monday...

Nothing is official yet, but quiet optimism is emanating from Brooklyn when it comes to Kevin Garnett playing for one more season.

Garnett has predictably said nothing since the Nets' season ended with a second-round loss to Miami, but the whispers are starting to get louder that KG, at 38, wants to play out the final season of his contract, which is valued at $12 million.

Stein also notes that KG's return is likely to have an effect on the Nets' pursuit of Paul Pierce "who is expected to draw interest from Doc Rivers' Clippers and a slew of other contenders."  But teams like the Clippers and Bulls can't give Pierce a big contract.  The Nets control his Bird Rights and could pay him whatever the market demands.

What will his role be on a team that starts a healthy Brook Lopez?  Perhaps as a back-up center?  League sources also said the KG could also be helpful with the recruiting of Shaun Livingston.