Neil Leifer's photographs have regularly appeared in every major national magazine, including the Saturday Evening Post, Look, LIFE, Newsweek, Time and, most often, Sports Illustrated.
In August 1972, Leifer became a staff photographer for Sports Illustrated. He left Sports Illustrated in February 1978 and became a staff photographer for Time magazine. In 1988 he was made a contributing photographer at LIFE magazine and spent the next two years dividing his time between Time and LIFE magazines. Leifer left Time, Inc. in 1990. By that time, his photographs had appeared on more than 200 Sports Illustrated, Time and People covers, the most covers ever published of one photographer's work in Time Inc. history.
Leifer has published 9 books, 4 of which have been collections of his sports images. He has photographed 15 Olympic Games (7 winter and 8 summer), 4 World Soccer Cups, 15 Kentucky Derbies, countless World Series games, the first 10 Superbowls and every important heavyweight title fight since Floyd Patterson beat Ingemar Johansson to regain the title in 1960. He has photographed his favorite subject, Muhammad Ali, on almost 60 different occasions.