According to our sources, producers have their eyes on Shannen Doherty, Carly Simon and Leann Rimes. We're told the show is looking for a strong and opinionated woman -- and they're thinkin' any one of them would fit the bill.
The judge's spot became available over the summer after Sharon Osbourne decided to quit the show after she claimed NBC dropped her son Jack from a reality show due to his MS diagnosis.
It's possible the producers could have other seats to fill -- we're told Howard Stern and Howie Mandel are not under contract for next season ... so it's conceivable the show could have an all-new judge's table.
As for Doherty, Simon and Rimes, we're told no offers have been made ... yet.
NBC spokesperson Sharon Pannozzo claims no such list of prospective judges exists -- but our sources, and they're good, say it does.