The Ducks are a fixture in Commack, and the warm fan response after an early struggle has made life there almost pleasant. Most of the players now sublet homes in nearby towns. After games they head up the road to a bar called Kelly's Irish House where, win or lose, they are greeted like heroes by a steady group of female followers and owners George and Dan. The players are a reflective lot. A few, like Player-Coach Les Calder, now 28, turned down offers of college scholarships. "I had no time," Calder says wryly, "I was gonna be a superstar."
George, the bartender, nods his head understandingly. He senses the players' moods and he too is keenly aware that Commack is a far cry from Montreal, or New York, or even Hempstead, but it is—or has been—home.