If you can pull a leaf shading a bud, forcing a leaf shading the floor to grow, that's a gain. Unless your 12/12 where the clock is ticking, so you don't want to be growing leaves still.
Perhaps your pulling leaves that expose both buds and more leaves that can then work properly.
A single plant from seed may grow in a way that doesn't put leaves where bud formation would be lowered. But they won't think twice about shading a neighbour. They want to beat them.
If you do a multi strain scrog grow, you will find short heavy yielding plants can get buried by lanky bean poles. So you simply loose them. Unless you actively train everything. Which involves pulling leaves to keep the shorter plants exposed.
It's logic and reasoning. Not just a blanket decision you stick with for life. Every leaf is an individual case. I scrog, and if I'm a lazy, I can easily kiss 20% goodbye. Just as intensive effort can give me 10% more. So skipping the defoliation would cost me a grow a year. I would literally be doing a grow every year, to pay for my inadequacy.
I don't have a side by side to show you. I have decades of experience. I know what I will get from the grow I haven't built yet. Some have run consistently for decades. I have tried it both ways, and paid the price on each occasion.
In ideal conditions, the plant will grow leaves it needs to get bigger. Which will ultimately become shaded in many cases. Putting a parasitic load on the leaves that are still in good locations. The plant hasn't evolved to drop them, as they're stores for mobile elements, should the need arise. Such as an early switch to flower food, that commonly causes the N to be pulled out. If that sounds like your grow, leave them on for that purpose. But once that period is over, get them off, and the one's that are still being kept alive but were not needed.
I have told people to leave me to it, as they won't want to watch. As I have snapped down over growth, pulled leaves and left a full looking room looking decimated. With instruction not to move anything for 3 days while they recover. People almost fall out with me. They would never do a proper side by side as they just don't get the picture. They think they tried it, but changed nothing.
Yet outdoors I barely do any. Their shape isn't decided upon by me. Little more than nipping the tops and pulling obvious shade issues off is done. They grow monster leaves because they need them in my climate. And as they quit making leaves long before the light becomes petty, I really need all I can get. Though anything near the bottom comes off or it's the start of a rot party. You can quickly get a ring of yuk around the trunk where it reaches out from the surrounding undergrowth. If that happens, it don't matter how healthy the top is. The plants fubared