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Marc Stein reports:

James Posey remains the most coveted unrestricted free agent still on the market and New Orleans is being increasingly described as perhaps the biggest threat to Boston keeping him.

The champs are said to be reluctant to offer the 31-year-old a deal longer than three years starting at the $5.6 million midlevel exception, but the Celtics are bracing for a difficult decision depending on how high rival suitors are willing to bid, and given Posey's immeasurable contributions to their title run.

Getting Posey would be a huge coup for the Hornets, who are desperate to fortify their thin bench and import a glue guy knows how to win, as Posey has proven in Miami and Boston.

Washington is highly interested as well, but the Wizards have to find a way to shed a salary or two to have the financial flexibility to make a representative bid.

You haven't heard much about the Cleveland Cavaliers in free agency so far -- and at least one source close to the process believes they're out of the Posey running even though he's an Ohio native