Ideally, an 18th hole -- and especially the 72nd hole of a golf tournament -- offers validation. It should force a player, and particularly one in contention, to hit a good shot or suffer real consequences. That's not to say an 18th hole has to be a difficult par. A risk-reward par 5 can be played safely, but hitting in two and making birdie should require something special, especially under pressure. Above all the hole should be interesting and intelligently designed. This leaves out Firestone's 18th, with its poorly conceived driving area. My five also doesn't include the 18th at Pebble Beach, often called the greatest finishing hole in golf. No doubt it's gorgeous, and in heavy wind can be quite difficult. But it's essentially a layup hole, and I'm not a big fan of trees in the middle of the fairway.