DETROIT -- The race for the Eastern Conference’s second wild-card spot is as tight as can be, with four clubs separated by one point battling for a playoff berth. Two of those teams will square off on Tuesday night when the Detroit Red Wings host the Washington Capitals at Little Caesars Arena.

Puck drop between the Red Wings (38-31-8; 84 points) and Capitals (36-30-11; 83 points) is set for 7 p.m., with TV broadcast coverage airing exclusively on ESPN and radio coverage on 97.1 The Ticket in Detroit.

Entering Tuesday, Detroit and the Pittsburgh Penguins were tied at 84 points apiece in the standings, but the Red Wings held the second wild-card spot with one game in hand.

“It’s fun to be part of these games,” Joe Veleno said. “It’s what we want as players and what we dream of is to play meaningful games. We got another opportunity (Tuesday). We’re going to come out strong. I’m really confident with our team and that the guys in our locker room will pull through.”

In Sunday’s 3-1 victory over the Buffalo Sabres, goalie Alex Lyon made 37 saves for Detroit while Lucas Raymond, Patrick Kane and captain Dylan Larkin all scored first-period goals. With the win, the Red Wings improved to 25-6-5 when scoring first this season and 16-1-4 when doing so on home ice.

“We struggled with our starts a couple weeks ago, but we kind of cleaned that up,” said Raymond, who leads Detroit with 63 points in 77 games this season. “It’s always a benefit when you can come out like that. The first period was good, especially the first 10 (minutes), then we kind of dropped off a little bit. But a strong performance and nice to get out of here with a win.”

Red Wings head coach Derek Lalonde said Sunday’s winning lineup will take the ice again on Tuesday in Detroit’s penultimate home game of the 2024 regular season.

“May tinker with some lines a little bit,” Lalonde said after Monday’s optional practice. “(Sunday) was a little specific with some matchups, which the guys handled extremely well. We’ll play that out.”

Washington saw its winless streak reach six games with a 3-2 overtime loss to the Ottawa Senators on Sunday. The Red Wings are 1-1 against the Capitals this season, most recently suffering a 4-3 overtime road loss on March 26.

Lalonde said Detroit is looking to limit Washington’s dangerous offense, which has been led by Dylan Strome (26-38—64) and captain Alex Ovechkin (29-33—62) this season. Goaltender Charlie Lindgren has seen most of the work in the crease for the Capitals, posting a 21-15-7 record with a 2.82 goals-against average, .907 save percentage and five shutouts in 45 games this season.

“They have some elite talent,” Lalonde said about the Capitals. “I still am in awe of Ovi.”