i used to live in westbury, ny and worked out in huntigton. you wanna go with a major brand/dealer support behind it. i would reccomend exmark, scag, ferris, and bobcat. in that order (best-down) any of those will be a good investment and easy to get parts and service at multiple dealers.
trust me anything made by mtd pro (lesco) is not top of the line. exmark and scag make up something like 80% of the market in comm. equip sales. and the other 35 manufacturers take up the rest. so that says it all right there.
but the biggest thing is support. lesco is hard to stop by there stores and get parts, they ususally dont stock much at all. and if you get mad at them at the lesco store, were ya gonna go. at least with a name brand, there are usually multiple dealers to go to for parts and service (specially on long island, there are scag and exmark dealers just about every 10 miles)
Around here we see a lot of Exmark,Scag, and Lesco.Personally I think you should buy what fits your budget and what the dealers around you carry.You don't want to be traveling very far for a service issue or parts.So what you buy might not be the most popular but it might still be best for you.