I don't see a problem with a little more free play. The engagement is right at the end of the cable pull, I doubt you could make it loose enough to stop it from disengaging. Give it a try carefully. The premature wear would be from too little freeplay causing clutch slip when the lever was all the way out but the cable was still tight.
I adjusted to it pretty quickly, the nice thing is the lever barely has to be pulled to get complete disengagement. Don't bother pulling it all the way in to the bar, just the 1/4" or so it needs.
It's especially good if you happen to be wearing thicker gloves for the cold. You can fit the gloves under the lever, and still not have to worry about the gloves being tight under a shorter lever pull. Just pull a small amount and shift