Forget if size is important or not, we probably all agree relevancy is where it is at. But the question if it is true or an inflated number. Anyone with some schooling in statistics knows that you can make a numbers say almost anything you want (its pretty cool). But when the New York Times quote says "Sergey Brin, Google's co-founder, suggested that the Yahoo index was inflated with duplicate entries in such a way as to cut its effectiveness despite its large size," this is a major thing. I know the folks at Ask Jeeves feel the numbers are way inflated as well and so do lots of independents.
So what do the folks in the forums think? A WebmasterWorld forum thread named Sergey Brin Says Yahoo's Index Size Claim is Inflated has some fun chatter. Many offer hints that this is a cat fight. One said, "Someone's got a bad case of index envy..." A classic quote; "Some woman needs to tell these guys the size isn't as important as what you do with it."