Confirmed not necessary at all!
Just replaced the disk in my 2011 MacMini and I want to recommend, like others already have, to READ THE COMMENTS before starting the job! You save a TON of time, it took me way less than expected. You don't need to unplug any cable or remove the motherboard, etc.
Also, great tip about reinserting the antenna plate using a pape clip, that was the most difficult part!